Family & Consumer Science
The Family and Consumer Sciences program offers classes on nutrition, disease prevention, money management, and food preservation/food safety.
CSU Extension La Plata County focuses on three key areas. Dates and times are tentative and we suggest you contact the Extension office to confirm and or register. For additional programming needs or information on any of the following programs call Wendy Rice, R.D. @ 970-382-6461 or by using the Contact Form. Some of the classes available are as follows:
Prepare for Emergencies
An emergency situation can arise in an instant, without warning in the form of a natural disaster, a human caused event or as the result of an accident. When disaster strikes, you have only moments to prepare. How you react is significant. Are you prepared? Do you know where the shut off valves are? Do you have a family plan? What if you have to evacuate with less than 20 minutes notice? What documents are necessary? How does one prepare for the unexpected?
Class will be held on June 26th from 3:00pm - 4:00pm at the Vallecito Lake Chamber of Commerce.
ServSafe is a nationally recognized comprehensive food safety training developed by the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation. Food service managers and Cottage Foods producers need the highest level of food safety training and certification.
Participants who score 75% or higher will recieve a ServSafe certificate, valid for 5 years.
The Fall dates are to be determined.
Due to the nature of the soil in this county, our homes are at higher risk to have elevated Radon. If Radon level in your home is greater than 4 pCi/L, EPA recommends mitigation. Elevated Radon is the number 2 cause of lung cancer. Attend session to learn about Radon in our community, what it is, and what to do. Free Screening kits available to participants of classes. Classes offered at Fairgrounds in Durango, and as resource for Montezuma, San Juan, and Archuleta counties. Call 382-6463 for schedule of presentations. Classes begin in January, 2014 – Radon Awareness month.
High Altitude Cooking
Many recipes need to be modified to accommodate no only the semi-arid desert but particularly the higher elevations. La Plata County has homes that are 6000 – 8000 feet above sea level. Adjustments are necessary for baking, candy making, food preservation, and general cooking. Topics include Mediterranean cooking, Gluten free cooking, Cooking with spices, Cheese Making, Candy Making. Classes to be offered June 26th 4:00pm - 5:00pm (at Vallecito Lake Chamber of Commerce) and October 17 6:00pm - 8:00pm (at the La Plata County Fairgrounds) . For further details or additional dates contact Wendy Rice @ 970-382-6461.
CSU Extension publications with information on baking and cooking at high altitudes.
- A Complete Guide to High Altitude Baking
- Drying Foods
- High Altitude Baking
- High Altitude Food Preparation Guide (free)
- Making Cookie Recipes from a Basic Mix at High Altitudes for High Altitudes
- Making Yeast Breads at High Altitudes
- Mile High Cakes
- Quick Mixes for High Altitude Baking
- Today's Sourdough at High Altitude
- Wheat, Gluten, Egg, and Milk-Free Recipes at High Altitudes and Sea Level
High Altitude Food Preservation
- Canning Fruits
- Canning Tomatoes and Tomato Products
- Canning Vegetables
- Cost of Preserving and Storing Food
- Drying Fruits
- Drying Vegetables
- Food Preservation Without Sugar or Salt
- Freezing Fruits
- Freezing Vegetables
- Leathers and Jerkies
- Making Jellies
- Making Pickled Peppers
- Making Pickles
- Processing Chile Peppers
- Smoking Poultry Meat
Food Allergies and Special Diets
- Gluten-Free Baking
- Gluten-Free Diet Guide for People with Newly Diagnosed Celiac Disease
- Millet Recipes
- Wheat, Gluten, Egg, and Milk - Free Recipes at High Altitudes and Sea Level
Art and Science of Food Preservation
Preserving food at the height of its freshness and flavor can save money, increase self-reliance and enable us to enjoy the wonderful flavor year round. CSU Extension La Plata County offers hands-on food preservation workshops using safe, up-to-date, research-tested methods. For specific details and schedule as well as Master Food Safety Advisor schedule contact Wendy Rice @ 970 382 6461. Classes will be June 11, 13 & 18 (series of three classes)
Pressure Canner Safety and Maintenance
Pressure Gauges on Canners should be checked annually for accuracy. Bring your lid to the extension office to be checked ($5). Additional resources available.
Small Steps to Health and Wealth
This program is designed to motivate to you to implement behavior change strategies that simultaneously improve health and personal finances. Health problems affect your financial health and financial problems affect your physical health. Colorado State University Extension now offers Small Steps to Health and Wealth-a program designed to help connect your behaviors and habits to improve health and wealth. Making small changes makes a difference that is sustainable.
Class can be offered as one time session using 6 strategies (or for employees as a Brown Bag lunch presentation) or for more options (25 strategies) can be presented as four sessions.
Sessions are hands on and packed full of useful health and finance tips in a supportive learning environment. Make 2014 your year to feel better, eat healthier, be more active, and give your finances a boost.
Go to http://www.ext.colostate.edu/smallsteps/index.html for tips and information.
For La Plata County, a series will be offered throughout February @ no charge to help set your year in a good direction. 2014 Series dates are to be determined.
Strong Women Healthy Hearts
Heart disease is still the number one killer of women and often presents with symptoms different from men’s heart attack. Strong Women, Healthy Hearts gives women the opportunity to take time for themselves to learn more about heart disease and its prevention in an environment that is fun and undemanding. Healthy Hearts is a cardiovascular disease prevention curriculum that aims to help women reduce the risk of heart disease through fitness and nutrition education.
Classes are designed to help improve heart health and weight control. Each class lasts approximately 1 hour twice a week is divided into two six week sessions (Part 1 and Part 2) Over the course of the program, the aerobic activity progresses from approximately 20 minutes of low-to-moderate intensity physical activity to 25 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous intensity physical activity (plus stretching). The other half of each class includes leader-directed discussion around eating for heart health and hands-on cooking activities. The curriculum and resources emphasize an eating pattern that is rich in fruits, vegetables, low-fat or nonfat dairy, fish, whole grains, and legumes; it encourages leaner meats and poultry, and fewer refined carbohydrates and saturated and trans fats. Strong Women Healthy Hearts 2014 dates are to be determined.
Empower Your Money Management Skills
Colorado State University Extension provides practical, unbiased personal financial information to consumers to implement immediately. Individual counseling and group classes . Various options are available from this office.
Though we think we are prepared, we often find out too late. Almost 90 percent of women will end up managing their finances alone at some point in their lives and end up in significant financial stress within 23 months, according to the Department of Labor. For those who have little or no experience in managing money, taking small steps can prevent feeling overwhelmed. In addition to basic financial knowledge, both spouses should maintain at least a big picture view of their finances, even if the other spouse handles bills and investments.
Legally Secure Your Financial Future
This class is a very well received three part comprehensive series to help you get those important papers organized, to communicate with others and begin preparing your estate plan. Guest speakers deal with this on a daily basis. You leave with an extensive toolkit to help you succeed. 2014 dates are to be determined
Organize Your Important Household Papers –what is important and to organize important household papers and provides forms and publications to complete the task
Communicate Your Advance Directives for Health Care – Medical care provider explains advance directives for health care and how to communicate your final wishes
Prepare Your Estate Plan – An Estate planning attorney provides up to date information about legal issues such as wills, personal representative, probate, and trusts
Money Talk: Women’s Financial Education Series.
A series of 5 classes will help women improve their ability for financial well-being. Participants are provided with information and resources to improve and understand their finances. One of the resources includes a workbook containing dozens of worksheets (e.g., Evaluate Your Financial Goals) and activities to be put to use right away. Guest speakers will also provide information specific to participant needs. 2014 Dates are to be determined.
A multiple collection of hands on activities and lessons for beginning basics. Arrangements for class schedule.
https://www.annualcreditreport.com/cra/index.jsp to obtain up to six free reports annually (2 from each agency) as Colorado resident
http://creditscore.net to better understand your credit report and score. Understand that your score is a compilation of several items and of no use unless you are anticipating pursuing a loan or credit card.
Money Savings Energy Use
Colorado State University Extension Office has Tools available for loan to help you find the heat leaks using thermal leak detector and Kill-a-Watt Meter to measure electricity use and phantom loss.
Home Energy Audit Loan (HEAL) Program – borrow a Kill-a-watt power monitor, thermal leak detector, and flicker checker for free from our office to detect electricity waste and air leaks.
Teacher Energy Training – we can provide training on our standards-based, hands-on that is tailored to your needs.
Request an Energy Workshop or Presentation – we can put together workshops or presentations on our DIY Energy Assessment tools, energy efficiency, solar, wind energy, and/or climate change for your group or organization.
Online Resources – our energy homepage provides a variety of online fact sheets, videos, decision tools, webinars, and more. http://www.ext.colostate.edu/energy/index.html
Green Home, Green Wallet Cost Effective Energy Options and Ideas for energy savings
Cottage Food Producers
http://cofarmtomarket.com/value-added-products/cottage-foods/ for updates and more details
Colorado law passed March, 2012 to encourage more cottage industry in our state. You may now prepare (in home kitchen without license) specific food items and sell direct to consumer.
One requirement to sell is the obtaining of ServeSafe Manager Certification. Individual course completion is available through CSU Extension La Plata County. Classes are available for groups on request. For more information on Cottage Food Industry or ServSafe™ certification training, contact the office at 970 382 6461.
Certification meets requirement for individuals wanting to produce and sell home-based food products in accordance with the Colorado Cottage Food Act. Participants must achieve a passing exam score of 75% or higher to receive a certificate, valid for 5 years.
New tool kit to aid you in conducting an audit of energy use (and waste) in your home. The Home Energy Audit Loan (HEAL) kit includes:
- thermal leak detector that can help you find air leaks and gaps in insulation;
- Kill-a-wattTM and Belkin Energy Use Monitor power monitors to measure excessive appliance electricity use or find ‘phantom loads’ that use electricity even after the appliance is turned off;
- ‘flicker checker’ that detects the presence of inefficient magnetic ballasts in long fluorescent tube lighting (commonly found at commercial locations or in shops).
The HEAL kit can be borrowed for free for one week. Although the tools can be used individually, results will be even more powerful if used in conjunction with CSU Extension’s online Do-It-Yourself home energy audit worksheets and supporting online videos (www.ext.colostate.edu/energy/diy.html).
Contact Wendy Rice: 382-6461 or by using the Contact Form