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February 6, 2017
Be a Sweetheart in the High Country on February 11 and 12

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On Valentine’s Day, we all want to do something thoughtful for our sweethearts. Why not double up and help someone you don’t even know have a hot, nourishing meal? It’s so easy!

This is the 14th year for Be a Sweetheart. The event was founded in 2004 when a need to fill their pantries was communicated by our food security partners. In the beginning, Mast Store matched each pound of candy purchased with our own pound of food. Then, because of the ability of our food banks and food rescue partners to stretch a dollar into more, Mast Store began donating $1 for each pound purchased. It was a natural tie-in to link Valentine’s Day, when many of us do something nice for someone we love, to supporting efforts to feed a desperate need in our communities.

February 1, 2017
Enjoying the Mountains in Winter

Winter is gradually making its grand appearance with sinking temperatures and driving snow. After the wintry mix is plowed and the wind abates, it’s time to head outside for some wintertime exploration. The detail, clarity, and focus across multiple mountain ranges are most spectacular in the deep of winter. Closer views are just as thrilling because the bare trees reveal details on the landscape that are easy to miss when blocked by rich foliage.

January 25, 2017
Winter Layering Tips - Part Two

2-layer-MAIN.jpgLast week, we explored the basics of layering to help you stay warm and dry in winter weather. This is the most important place to start because a warm core sends blood to the rest of your body and helps keep your extremities warmer, too. This week, we offer a few tried and true tips for pant layers in addition to ways to protect your neck, face, fingers, and feet.

January 18, 2017
Layering Tips for Wintry Adventures

layering-main.jpgWhen it comes to winter sports like snowshoeing, hiking, skiing, and sledding, layering up is the best way to comfortably enjoy your favorite cold weather activities. Used to maximize comfort, this simple concept is easy to apply when you understand how it works.

January 11, 2017
Ideas for Enjoying Snow Days

snow-days-main.jpgWith another unseasonably mild holiday season behind us, folks in the southeast were very excited to wake up to 6 to 10 inches of fresh fallen snow the first full weekend of the New Year. If your family is anything like mine, we were totally unprepared for the powdery goodness. (My husband chalks it up to wearing shorts from March straight through December in 2016.) Below, you’ll find a few ideas for how to make the most of your next snow day. Our fingers are crossed that we have quite a few more in store this winter…

December 27, 2016
Resolve to Make 2017 a Year of Giving

giving-main-3.jpgThere’s that moment each year after all of the gifts are unwrapped and the last of our Christmas dinner leftovers have been put away that I find myself alone in our living room. “The children are nestled all snug in their beds,” the multi-colored tree lights bounce off the hardwood floor in a cheerful rainbow, and I’m flanked by a snoozing dog and cat, thinking to myself, “Is Christmas over already?” Within days, I’m preparing for the new year and am faced with a new set of questions: “What will 2017 look like?” “How and where will I invest my time in the New Year?”

December 19, 2016
Gift Giving Made Easy with Fun Themes

cmas-gifts-main.jpgDo you ever find yourself stumped when selecting thoughtful gifts to give your loved ones during the holiday season? This year, we’ve compiled a list of gift themes to please a variety of folks in your life. We hope this guide will help make your gift selecting (and your recipient’s receiving) a little more creative and a lot more fun.

December 14, 2016
Simple & Delicious Holiday Appetizer Recipes

cmas-recipe-main.jpgThis past weekend, dear friends of ours invited us to a “12 Appetizers of Christmas” party. Each of the families that were invited brought an appetizer to share. Guests brought sweet and savory dishes that made for a delicious and very celebratory feast. Below, you’ll find a few simple recipes from our Mast Store family that you might want to share at your next family gathering or party with friends this holiday season.

December 7, 2016
Fun & Easy Holiday Crafts with Kids

hoilday-kid-craft-1.jpgYour child’s winter break from school will be here before you know it. This break from often an overfilled schedule provides ample opportunity to enjoy working on creative projects together. One of my family’s favorite holiday traditions is making holiday decorations (that we’ll pull out and enjoy year after year) and crafting sweet homemade gifts for friends and family. Below you’ll find a few ideas that are easy for even the youngest artists. Plus, these crafts are so simple that you’ll probably have most of the materials you need already in your home!

December 1, 2016
Choose & Cut Your Own Christmas Tree This Year

tree-1.jpgThinking about the many Christmas trees I’ve enjoyed throughout the years brings up a host of sweet memories: The earliest trees of my childhood included brass clip-on candle holders. We lit the candles on the tree each evening (my parents were very brave). This tradition was passed down through the generations from our Swedish ancestors. There was the year our newly acquired stray cat took the entire tree down only a half hour after it was fully decorated…