Canada Markets open in 7 hrs 12 mins

Tamera Mowry-Housley Says It's Important to Her to 'Be Present' as a Mom During the Holidays

Tamera Mowry-Housely
Tamera Mowry-Housely

Michael Simon

Tamera Mowry-Housley has a lot to juggle as a working mom during the holiday season.

After a whirlwind year that saw her hosting Dr. Seuss Baking Challenge, releasing her new memoir You Should Sit Down For This, and spending time with husband Adam Housley and their two children, daughter Ariah, 7, and son Aden, 10, the Sister, Sister alum tells PEOPLE she's realized the value of rest.

"I'm enjoying taking advantage of the downtime that I'm able to have with my family as a working, traveling mom," the mom of two says of the holiday season.

At this time of year, that means a lot of quality time with her family of four.

"It's such a blessing — and I want to hold on to it as long as I possibly can, I'm praying that it will be like this in the future — but we literally love spending quality time together. Like my children love being with our family," shares the actress.

Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE's free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from juicy celebrity news to compelling human interest stories.

RELATED: Tamera Mowry-Housley Says 'Perfection Doesn't Exist' When It Comes to Parenting 

"I don't know how long that's gonna last, but they are 10 and 7 now. We love sitting down, right now watching Christmas moviesJingle Jangle, Christmas Chronicles, Santa Clause, Home Alone."

"And we love baking cookies. We're going to bake some more for Santa," Mowry-Housley says. "This year we're going to do shortbread."

The former daytime host knows a thing or two about long days, and in the "hustle and bustle of the holidays, with family engagements," she says she needs to "have it balanced" between work and family.

"Everybody that knows me knows that I feel life is to be enjoyed, and I like to enjoy the things I'm doing. Whether that's work or baking cookies with my kids or working out, I have to be present and enjoying it."

Tamera Mowry-Housely
Tamera Mowry-Housely

Michael Simon

Her struggles with sleep have previously made that difficult, but she found her solution in leading sleep-aid brand Natrol, inspiring her holiday season partnership with the company.

"I've learned throughout these years that if you don't get effective sleep, it's very hard to be clear-minded," she says. "I'm now able to have that clarity, to be aware, to be present, with a product that has clean ingredients so I can live my life, the best way."

With that clarity, Mowry-Housley is able to enjoy her favorite part of the holiday season — reflecting on how much her kids have grown.

"I love that each year, my kids get better at what they love," she shares. "My son gets better in soccer, baseball, and my daughter in gymnastics. You can see that progress and passion just grow and it's real."

With a busy new year ahead, every opportunity that comes the actress' way comes with thoughts of her kids. "Everything that I do now, I want my children to be proud of."