Ok - they aren't really "crashing"....
I posted in another thread about my great disappointment at missing my first Christmas Eve with my father in my life (38 years) because my in-laws are driving 14 hours to spend Christmas eve/day with us and our children (first time in the 14 years that we have been married that DH gets to spend with his parents).
Well - when I told my father that we wouldn't make it, he was upset and offered to have my in-laws over so that we could still be with him AND him. My in-laws are about as laid back as it gets and said that they would come.
Here's the issue: we open gifts on Christmas at Dad's house....lots of them. lots and lots of expensive ones (my father tends to go overboard on Christmas, and my older sister and I do for him as well).
I don't want my father and sister to feel like they have to pick up a gift for the "extra people". DH and I are happy to go out and purchase an extra gift each for my in-laws for them to open at Dad's house.
First: is this even necessary? My in-laws are fabulous people and very laid back (to the point that the biggest fight MIL and I have had was whether or not I would serve food on paper plates....I just don't DO paper plates) and I am sure won't feel entitled to a gift at Dad's. Any gift that they get there will be a pleasant surprise.
Second: should I call/email Dad and sis and tell them specifically NOT to get my in-laws a gift - that since we are the ones bringing the "outsiders", then we will take care of getting them something to open? Is it rude to tell them not to buy my in-laws a gift when it is entirely possible that they didn't even think about getting them a gift in the first place?
Third: my SM makes a fabulous filet roast on Christmas Eve and, while I love her, tends to get stressed out a bit quickly. Additionally, she and dad just got back together this summer after a year-long separation (they've been married 25 years). I've already thanked her on the phone the other day when I called, and reiterated that "thank you" in a "P.S" of an email that I sent to Dad yesterday. Is there anything else I should do for SM?
Last: is there anything special I could/should do for my in-laws? They aren't coming up here to spend time with my family - they are coming to see their son & grandchildren (and me, by default). The fact that they are willing to go to my father's house Christmas Eve means a great deal to me.
Sorry if I seem a little nuts about this....it's just that I was going to be VERY depressed on Christmas Eve if I didn't spend it with my father....the fact that I still can means a great deal to me
(PS: I am making a fabulous Christmas breakfast and dinner and aside from Church, we don't plan on seeing anyone else on Christmas day..... so they do get that full day uninterrupted)