Heidi moved to New York to be an artist but ended up excelling in a position as art gallery curator, her paints mostly forgotten. Her sister needs a favour close to the holidays – she needs an overnight babysitter for her two kids, so Heidi finagles some time off work to return to small town Pleasant Valley and spend some time with her niece and nephew.
While there, Heidi isn’t just a babysitter, but the defacto Christmas mom too, fulfilling all the holiday duties her sister is signed up for. She has to bake cookies, take the kids to pageant rehearsal, and volunteer for the Snowball dance. And guess what! The Snowball dance is being organized by her former high school sweetheart Chris, who is now her nephew’s teacher and hockey coach. While not the obvious choice for Snowball volunteer, the truth is, Chris and Heidi are both Snowball royalty – they were Snowball king and queen back when they were young and in love.
Although she’s badly needed back at work, of course Heidi’s stay with the kids gets extended. And while she’s there, she gets out paints and canvas that she’s apparently had stashed there for years (?) and gets busy IN HER SISTER’S ALL BEIGE LIVING ROOM. I mean, there isn’t even an ugly-patterned couch to help hide the inevitable stains. Her apron suggests that only a small fraction of paint actually makes it to the canvas, but she’s going to risk the wall to wall carpeting in someone else’s house? Really, Heidi? I’m such a messy painter that I once accidentally dripped some pain on my dog Herbie, then a frisky puppy, when I was refurbishing a dresser. When I later made an appointment to take him to his first vet visit, they asked me lots of questions over the phone – how many weeks old, what breed, what colour – to which I responded, white, black, and teal, which technically, pre-bath, he was. I explained the joke and how it came to be, but when we turned up to the vet days later, teal had made it into his official file, and remains there to this day.
Anyway, there’s very little romance in this romantic Christmas movie. There’s very little to recommend it, period. There’s not even a cute, off-colour dog.