My SIL hosted the whole family for Christmas this year (In my husband's family, we rotate each year between three of us - I get it next year). While we don't exchange Christmas gifts among our generation (it's mostly for the kids and the parents), I always like to bring a hostess gift to whoever is feeding us.
Of course, me being me, It's usually something handcrafted (even the bag!) And before anyone starts accusing me of going over the top (which I know I do on occasion...) sewing a bag out of leftover fabric from a recent sewing project took less time than trying to find a box to fit, and wrap it)
This particular SIL (wife of my husband's brother) and I are quite good friends (by choice, not just because we share a family!), and she had been hinting around for a while for a gnome. Her living room is mostly a mustard gold tone, with brown leather furniture, hence the colour choice - she had said she didn't want a particularly Christmassy one, as she planned on having him sitting around all year. Yes, the hints were that specific!
She loved him, and he immediately found a home on a suspiciously empty table (I think she had high hopes this year!) The funniest comment came from my other SIL (husband's younger sister). She hosted everyone last year, and for whatever reason, decided to serve dinner 3 hours earlier than usual, which meant they ate without us. (we were not going to cut short time with my family to accommodate that - especially since no reason for moving up the time was given...) We arrived to find they had all eaten, and were cleaning up, but had left us plates of food - "oh by the way, the microwave isn't working". So we were expected to eat it cold, all the while being rushed so they could open the gifts - "are you done yet - everyone is waiting!". (and this is the same SIL that brought the new boyfriend unexpectedly this year).
Yeah, there are some issues with my husband's sisters - I just try to ignore it.
Anyhoo, when SIL-1 opened the gnome, SIL-2 exclaimed "I love him! Why didn't I get one last year when I hosted?"
Two beats of silence, then I answered. "You didn't host us, remember? You ate without us".
She had the decency to look abashed. SIL-1 hid the giggles (she was appalled at what happened last year, and even sat with us while we scarfed what we could). It was probably the only mar on a great Christmas Day, but as my husband said after - it wasn't really a bad thing - his sister needs that kind of reminder.
Either way, another gnome has found a new home, and it's a happy one. That's the important thing.
I live just north of Toronto, in a lovely little town. Urban enough, but just the right amount of small town...
Working full time outside the home as a Licensing Cordinator and Analyst, and full time inside the home with a husband and son!