Although it has every cliche you've ever seen in holiday movies, this does a better job of it than most. Usually, the leading lady's boyfriend is a terrible person, which destroys the happy mood and makes the woman look like a fool. The boyfriend in this one is nice and clearly has strong feelings for his girlfriend, but they have nothing in common, he expects too much from her, and he makes big decisions without consulting her because he thinks big surprises are romantic (romance movies lead people to wrongly believe it is romantic). The new love interest is normally a funny, charming guy who is too shy to say how he feels. The one in this movie is a military man, so he knows life is short and always says what is on his mind. He's pretty serious, but he's helpful to everyone he meets and is a hard worker. He doesn't fall in love with the leading lady because of her beauty; he is touched that she writes holiday greeting cards to soldiers. Ordinarily, the family in holiday movies have some weird holiday-related family business and live in a creepily happy fake town. This movie takes place in Nevada City, CA and was filmed on location. The family has a logging business, so they do sell holiday trees, but in a small town in the mountains this seems like a logical career. I also liked that there is a music score the whole time.