Emily Springer decides to leave Leavenworth, Washington, to spend Christmas with her daughter in Boston.Charles Brewster, history professor, curmudgeon and resident of Boston, wants to avoid Christmas altogether. He figures a prison town should be nice and quiet over the holidaysexcept he's thinking of the wrong Leavenworth!Through an internet site, Charles and Emily arrange to swap houses for the holiday. So Emily goes to Bostonand discovers that her daughter has gone to Florida. And Charles arrives in Leavenworth to discover that it's not the prison townit's Santa's village! Meanwhile, Emily's friend Faith Kerrigan travels to Leavenworth to visit her and instead finds Charles the grinch. Then Charles's brother, Ray, shows up at his home in Boston to discover that he isn't therebut Emily is.Through all the mix-ups and misunderstandings, romance begins to emerge in unexpected ways. Because everything changes at Christmas!