The episode starts out with Paul directing his wife Cate on how to put up the Christmas lights. After arguing about how Cate knows how to set up Christmas lights Bridget enters and asks Paul if she can have a party on Christmass Eve. Paul, of course, says no, so she then asks if she can just invite Kyle over. He again says no. That then sparks a debate over how they want a perfect Christmas and how it will be better then last year, where Paul got stuck in Chicago and bought them all Chicago related items (Bar towel, Teddy bear with Chicago teeshirt). Paul then announces he's going to get everyone their perfect gift and asks for suggestions. Rory wants a motorcycle and Bridget wants to have Kyle over. Kerry then enters with a dog and asks to keep him. As this is going on Paul is trying to compete with their neighbors on who has the brightest house in their neighborhood.
In the next scene Paul and Cate are complaining about the dog and they decide that Kerry can not keep him. Cate then leaves for choir practice and Paul is left with having to tell the devastating news to his daughter himself. Kerry then enters with the dog holding onto Christmass lights and starts saying what she named him when Paul stops her. Of she names the dog she'll get attached to it. He then procedes to tell her that her mother says she can't keep the dog (This is a lie: both agree she can't keep the dog after it ate their tinsel). He says no one can take care of it because he needs too much attention. They decide to take him to an animal shelter. The dog then enters holding a baseball that turns out to be Paul's autographed baseball.
Paul takes the kids to the mall. Kerry is in a very grumpy mood. Cate gets excited because Merry Beth (A woman in the choir) who always gets a solo fell off a ladder so Cate assume that she can take her place. Kerry learns Goldie (a previous dog) also got sent to a pound. She is very upset. Rory decided what he wants for Christmas is a chemistry set: "Think of all the explosions... of knowledge in my brain." Cate quickly shoots the idea down, but Paul thinks she's toying with him and winks at her. Cate quickly keeps saying no but Paul just gives her the OK sign, still thinking she's kidding.
Back at home Paul is trying to work in his laptop, while Bridget talks on the phone and Cate sings loudly in the background. Paul yells "FOR THE LOVE OF GOD BE QUIET!!" and Bridget storms out of the room. Cate is mad and Paul says that it was mostly for Bridget. Cate sings loudly again and Paul snaps. Cate admits she got the solo and Paul hugs her. Rory enters the house saying their neighbors just unloaded some decoration bigger then their house. Rory yells at him for not wanting to insect the competition. Kerry storms into the house all mad because she went to the shelter to visit her dog and found out they placed one dog this week and 15 came in. Paul then shows Kerry his new column which is encouraging people to adopt from animal shelters. Kerry says the perfect gift is for them all to help out at the shelter's fair on Christmas. Cate gets nervous because she is afraid she'll screw up in front of her family. Paul doesn't help when he tells her there will be a couple hundred people in the church. He then realizes he messed up and says "Don't look at it like you're singing for a church full of people. You're singing for God", which just makes her even more nervous. She then announces that her family can't come (causing them to think she didn't actually get a solo). They hold a quick family vote asking if the kids care if they don't go to midnight services and they don't care so Cate quickly runs out of the house.
Paul and Rory are setting up lights. Paul yells across the road to show their neighbors their lights when they are blinded by their neighbors' lights.
Paul, Rory and Bridget go to the mall to see Kerry since she won't be with them on Christmas Eve. Bridget stays 3 steps behind them because she doesn't want people thinking she's with them (but only because it's Christmas). Bridget spots Kyle at the mall with a gift. She hides behind Paul and watches Kyle from afar. She sees he bought her jewelry and is upset because she only bought him massage oil. She and Rory leave to find him a better gift. Paul yells at her to not buy him anything she has to rub on him, which earns Paul awkward glances from people. Paul sees Kerry standing alone by a booth in the mall around the corner. She tells people to adopt pets and when they ignore her, she calls them names once they leave.
Paul approaches her, and Kerry says she isn't leaving until she finds at least one dog a home. She is annoyed because she can't even get people to stop. Paul stops a family and makes them look at the dogs. Kerry finally found a dog a home just as Bridget, Kyle and Rory arrive. Paul says they can leave but then looks at Kerry's wounded face and says one dog isn't enough. Bridget, Kyle and Rory all get dogs and try to get people to adopt them. They got a lot of the dogs adopted by the end. Paul pulls them into a hug after a heartfelt speech, but they pull away saying 'Don't touch me'. Kerry is really upset because every dog there has been adopted, except for the one she found.
They stop at their church to hear the choir. The lady in front of Bridget has a tag sticking out, and Bridget desperately wants to tuck it in. Cate sings Silent Night beautifully. At the end they all come home and open up their presents.
Rory gets a chemistry set. Kerry gets her puppy and Bridget gets Kyle.