Today I’m sharing 5 tips to savor the holiday season (from a 50-year-old perspective), along with our favorite Date Crinkle Cookies recipe!

Date Crinkle Cookies

Happy December 1st, Friends! One of my favorite all-time recipes growing up was Chocolate Crinkle Cookies. Last week we put a spin on the recipe by adding chopped dates! Oh, my goodness, they melt in your mouth.

Date Crinkle Cookies.

My mom cooked a lot with dates, so I continued the practice and our family loves them! I have noticed some people are not “date lovers,” which is okay. I like to think of December as “date” month. For this recipe, substitute the dates for the mini chocolate chips! Delicious!

Roll and freeze.

I have a few parties planned this holiday season, but honestly, I’m not going overboard. I’ve learned to pace myself, check out our holiday schedule with my family first, and take time to enjoy the season.

I love how this recipe today is easy to make, roll, and freeze. When the time is right, remove from the freezer, defrost the cookie balls, roll in powdered sugar, and bake!

Serve the cookies warm.

They are the best when served warm, right out of the oven! Or, better yet, with a glass of milk!

Date Crinkle Cookies

Don’t forget to breath.

I think as women we sometimes forget to breathe during the month of December! So today I’m sharing my 5 tips for a less stressful month of December. I’m sharing from the perspective of a 50+ year old, married woman, mama of 3 adult kids, and what I’ve learned from some crazy holiday seasons. Seriously, I think in our 30s we’re just trying to do to much and impress one another. In my 40s I learned to slow down, but still piled quite a bit on. Now today, I’m savoring every moment that I can by planning, spreading out the activities, having down time, and not overdoing. Basically, the holidays for our family mean being with the people we love.

Yes, the people we love!

5 tips to savor the holiday season:

1. Evaluate your time and be intentional about who you want to spend your precious time with. Maybe spend 20% with obligations (you know, the people that you know you have to see over the holidays), and 80% with those the family wants to spend time with.

2. Be creative and plan a couple of special events at your house. Change it up—maybe with an outside chili party, a dessert party, caroling with a couple of families, one intimate dinner party. Get the kids involved, even as adults, so they continue to learn how beautiful hospitality can be, and how it blesses our lives.

3. Only decorate areas that you want to. In other words, you don’t have to haul out all of the Christmas decorations this year. Maybe put up the tree, add a few favorite cherished decorations, and then bring in fresh greens, pinecones, and don’t forget to decorate with food! (Cranberries, pomegranates, apples, nuts.)

4. It’s okay to say no. You don’t have to go to every party, even though you’ve always done it. Maybe one night spent with your immediate family is more important than going to the neighbor’s open house that they’ve hosted for 20 years. Change it up – your family will love you.

5. Don’t forget to love your husband. Yes, don’t forget to love your husband. December should not be a month in which you are too busy to love your husband.

So that’s it. My wise, thought-out, holiday lessons of love, time management, and boundaries!

Do you struggle with actually “enjoying” the holiday season, or what lesson have you learned that has really helped you savor Christmas time?

Date Crinkle Cookies

Date Crinkle Cookies
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Get the Recipe:

Date Crinkle Cookies

Make dough ahead of time and freeze in balls. Defrost cookie balls and roll in powdered sugar before baking!
Prep Time: 40 mins
Cook Time: 10 mins
Total Time: 50 mins


  • 1/2 cup butter, 1 stick, melted
  • 2/3 cup cocoa
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 cup dates, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar


  • Preheat oven to 350. Combine melted butter, cocoa, eggs, both sugars, salt, and vanilla. Mix well.
  • Whisk in flour and baking powder and mix well. Stir in dates. Cover and chill for 30 minutes, until dough is firm.
  • Place the powdered sugar in a small bowl. Scoop the dough into 3/4 inch rounds and roll in the powdered sugar.
  • Arrange the cookies on parchment-lined baking sheets and bake for 8-10 minutes.
  • Cool the cookies before serving.
Did you make this recipe?Tag @reluctantentertainer on Instagram and hashtag it #reluctantentertainer!

Cookies for Santa’s Milk Drive

Did you know that milk is one of the most requested and yet least donated food to food banks? To make a difference, I’m participating with the Cookies for Santa’s Milk Drive campaign to encourage readers to make an online donation of just one gallon of milk for those in need. This is part of the Great American Milk Drive’s national effort and it’s so simple. Click on the link and select your state and choose your donation amount and your donation will be distributed to a food bank that will help someone in your own community. Won’t you join me? You can donate as little as $5 to insure kids have milk on the table.

The entire dairy industry from dairy farmers to dairy processors has come together and joined with Feeding America food banks to help get milk to those who need it most. Please feel free to share; those of us so fortunate to not have to worry about milk and cookies can make a big difference this holiday season! Hashtag #‎Santasmilkdrive

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