When it comes to family traditions, my clan of people certainly don't have a shortage of them. A lot of those traditions depend a lot on what type of christmas we're celebrating, but all in all, it's usually the same every year.

When the entire extended family comes together for a rare holiday together, it always went pretty much the same way. Everyone exchanged ultra-cheap gifts during the Dirty Santa game, things usually got heated for the one or two good gifts, and that ended up down a path of backhanded compliments and straight up fist fights among the various siblings and cousins. Keep in mind, these fights broke out in the absence of alcohol... It's just how the family of egos was. We haven't had a holiday like that in years though. Mainly because we all grew tired of pretending to like each other if even for a day, and there's no longer a grandparents house to all congregate at since they passed.

The other christmas, and my chosen way of doing things is more close to home. We all usually end up either at the family home of our parents or at my sisters McMansion in Tulsa. There's room enough for everyone to have their own space, and any holiday that doesn't take place at my house is a good holiday. For the messy gift opening with 12 people, we gather in the biggest room and sort all the presents out, then take turns opening them by age. It's really quite tidy. We'll eat our holiday feast, usually either a finger food array of treats or a taco fiesta (tacos for the holidays are perfect. nobody complains, no leftovers) but all in all for the meal, there's always two dishes that shine at every holiday meal. One sister makes the absolute best soft and chewy chocolate chip cookies in the world, the other makes Schweddy Balls, and they're pretty dang good too.

Can you believe it's been 22 years since this holiday classic hit small screens all over the US? It doesn't really seem like that long ago until you put it into perspective... It aired in a different century... Wild. I know. If you want adopt our tradition as your own, there are a ton of epic Schweddy Ball recipes online. Find one, try it, master it, then serve it. Don't ever serve your first attempt. That's just bad manners.

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