Would You Charge Your Family for Christmas Dinner?

A woman in Great Britain charges her family the equivalent of $40 a person -- except the children -- to come to her house for Christmas dinner.  

She says it was her in-laws' idea because the way they were doing it just wasn't working out.  Many family members would "forget" to bring a dish, so she'd have to scramble to get everything worked out at the last minute.  And there are family members who have food allergies, so she's always concerned someone will bring a dish that they couldn't eat.

She says charging the money is a fair, stress-free way to enjoy a family meal at the holidays... but others say it's not in the giving spirit of the holidays.  See the video of what she said and the lady who disagreed with her on British television here.

Here's my question for you: if you've ever hosted a holiday dinner, you've probably dealt with guests coming through empty-handed when you were depending on them, or bringing extra guests and not giving you a heads up about it.... have you ever considered preparing everything yourself and asking for a love offering to cover the extra cost? Or is that just tacky?

I thank God that this situation has always worked out in my family because all this would stress me out!  But I don't think this lady is all wrong.  While I don't think I could ever charge anybody for dinner, if my money was tight, I sure would accept it if anybody offered because you know cash gets even tighter at the holidays.  But I also think you've got to consider who you're inviting... if you're being honest with yourself, you already know who is trifling, who can't really cook and who will come through for you, so you can and should adjust your expectations -- and guest list -- accordingly.  

Let me know what you think!

Jeanne Sparrow


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