Holidays Are a Time for Family, Friends, Bright Lights, Jingle Bells and Cookies

Looking back, I have many fond memories of rolling smooth, sugary dough in the palm of my hands to form various shapes-anything from the letters in my name to a huge dinosaur or a budding flower. Every Christmas Eve my grandma, mom, and eventually my little brother, would spend hours with our dough, perfecting each shape until it was ready to go onto the baking sheet. We listened to holiday music, told fun family stories, and carried out an incredible tradition.

As our cookies came out of the oven, we prepared a rich butter cream frosting and lined the table with a variety of sprinkles--some shaped like trees, some like snowflakes, and the others were full of vibrant colors. For every cookie that was iced, one (sometimes two) was eaten and before I knew it, it was time for bed.

I am big on traditions: I still watch Home Alone on Christmas Eve with my family, I still enjoy a good Easter Egg hunt, and I still love to roll out that sugar cookie dough.

Though I try to stay as healthy as possible during the holidays, indulging can be necessary. Whether you enjoy making holiday cookies as I do, or have another special tradition, make sure to enjoy every second. Living life in balance is as much about healthy eating as it is about savoring the moment.

Holiday traditions are meaningful in every way. Regardless of our age, we will always remember our holiday traditions as special moments in time. Once the holidays are over you can pack away your traditions and save them for next year; share extra sweets with friends and neighbors and prepare for the year ahead.

Happy Holidays!