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I am looking for a Christmas anthology (or maybe 2) with 2 specific short stories/novellas in them. I am not sure if they are in the same collection or not.
The first was called Christmas with the ??? the ? represents the last name of the family which I can't remember. An older couple gets hired by a wealthy family living in a manor house in England to come and help them with the cooking and cleaning for their family Christmas. The wealthy family hasn't gotten along for years and the older generation just wants to bring their children and grandchildren all together again. However when the entire family arrives they all treat each other so badly that the grandchildren retreat to the kitchen where the hired couple work, and it is so wonderful and homey there that they end up spending the rest of the time there. By the end of the story, the entire family has reconciled thanks to this wonderful hired couple. I think this may have been in a mid-20th century Christmas anthology.
The second story I think was called either The 12 Days of Christmas or The 12 Gifts of Christmas. A young man goes into a department store and asks a female clerk to help him find gifts for his fiancee that represent the items from the song The 12 Days of Christmas. I distinctly remember that the partridge in the pear tree that she finds is a brooch. At the end of the story, after all their hard work, the fiancee is NOT impressed, and the young man ends up marrying the dept store clerk instead. I think this story may have been in a Christmas romance compilation.
Last Edited on: 10/27/07 5:36 PM ET - Total times edited: 1