As my family tries to decide on our upcoming holiday plans, I can’t help but reflect on the pressure that comes with the busy (but joy-filled!) season. From the parties to never-ending presents, it can be easy to lose track of what really matters and have our well-being take a hit. But you know what I remember from being a kid? The big three: Christmas tree day when we piled into a car and watched my dad and brother cut down a blue spruce (it always had to be a blue spruce), family shopping day complete with “A Christmas Story” trivia on the drive to the city, and decorating shortbread cookies together after listening to my parents jokingly argue over the appropriate thickness.
The recurring theme with all these feel-good memories for me is being together as a family and simple, delicious food. Warm hot chocolate made with real milk often filled our bellies on the way home from the Christmas tree farm. And Christmas Eve dinner just wouldn’t have been the same without the cottage cheese pierogis that my dad made every year inspired by my Eastern European grandmother.
As you prep for this holiday season, take a minute to consider not only what brings you joy but also what your reset button will be when you start to feel overwhelmed. For some, this may look like savoring in a few special moments with people you love while enjoying delicious food, and for others, this could be taking some time to yourself. Dairy foods may be the perfect pair to these reset moments. A warm tea latte with real milk in the morning can be more than just a way to caffeinate; it can be a way to set your intention for the day and arm your body with essential nutrients that support your wellness. This season, take care of yourself by savoring in what really matters and enjoy nutrient-rich dairy.