Recap: Natalie is wrapping Christmas presents while Beverly Ann chats on the phone with her Appleton friend, Marjorie, who really really wants her to come to Appleton for the holidays. Blair bursts in and says she desperately needs to use the phone to call her stock broker, and in response Beverly Ann takes her sweet time wrapping up the call. Blair hastily dials her broker's number and is visibly miffed when she's told she just missed him, and then snappishly tells Beverly Ann that she missed the opportunity to make an absolute fortune by two minutes. Natalie swiftly changes the subject by asking Beverly Ann if she's going to Appleton for Christmas, and Beverly Ann says she'd much rather stay in Peekskill with them. Natalie tells her not to stay in town on her account 'cause she's going to be in Florida for the holidays, introducing Snake to her grandparents, and then Blair informs her that she and Tootie will also be away visiting their folks. Natalie announces that she's off to run errands or whatnot and isn't going to wear her coat 'cause the sleeve is badly ripped - but Beverly Ann says she noticed the rip and repaired it, and hastily pulls the coat out of the closet for her and insists that she wear it on this chilly December day.
As Pippa gabbles excitedly about experiencing her first White Christmas in the States, Beverly Ann asks Andy if he'd be up for travelling to Appleton for the holidays. He makes a blech face at that prospect and reminds her that Jeremy's parents invited him to tag along with them on a ski trip to Vermont, and a visibly disappointed Beverly Ann chews on that for a few seconds before dejectedly muttering that they can discuss it later.
Over in the kitchen, Tootie drops her makeup bag, spilling its contents all over the floor. She explains to Beverly Ann that she's especially nervous 'cause Jeff and his parents are going to be seeing her perform in a play later, and that whenever she's nervous she tends to drop things. Beverly Ann urges calm and finds her a Casper the Friendly Ghost lunchbox in which to transfer her makeup, explaining that the latch is very strong and will therefore prevent her from spilling her stuff everywhere.
Beverly Ann asks Jo if she's going to be around for Christmas, but Jo says she's mostly going to be spending the holidays with her parents. Pippa inquires whether or not she should adopt a new punk style, and Beverly Ann's like 'not', then cautions Jo against riding her motorcycle to the shelter 'cause of all the icy patches on the roads. Jo assures her she'll be fine - but relents when Beverly Ann insists on giving her a ride.
Jo and Beverly Ann arrive at the shelter, which - for some odd reason - is completely vacant. Beverly Ann offers to get everything ready for the orphans' upcoming Christmas party, but Jo tells her it's fully handled and that there's really nothing left for her to do. She then grabs the keys for the van and says she's off to pick up the orphans...and once she's safely out of earshot, Beverly grumbles, "I guess nobody needs me." A few seconds later, Santa Claus, who's in the process of trimming the shelter's Christmas tree, says, "I could use a hand" and asks her to pass him the silver star that's sitting atop the coffee table. As Beverly Ann passes it to him, he remarks on how glum she seems and encourages her to open up and tell him what she wants for Christmas this year. Beverly Ann glares at him suspiciously while snarling, "I suppose you'd like me to sit on your lap too", but Santa assures her that that's a no go 'cause Mrs. Claus gets irked whenever anyone over the age of twelve sits on his lap. He asks her again why she's so down in the dumps, so she says it's mostly 'cause she doesn't feel appreciated and kinda wishes she'd never come to Peekskill, since it doesn't seem as though it would have made the slightest bit of difference to anyone if she'd stayed in Appleton. Santa argues that it would have made a ginormous difference, then says, "Take a look.."
With a wink of his eye (or a twist of his head), Santa transports Beverly Ann back to the residence, and she glances around the living room and notices with alarm that her piano isn't there, nor are the stockings she had just hung by the chimney with care. As she calls for the Facts gang to show themselves to ask them whassup, Santa reminds her that, in accordance with the It's a Wonderful Life themed rip-off that makes up much of this episode, she never came to Peekskill. As Beverly Ann digests the reality of the faux dimension she suddenly finds herself in, Blair gets a phone call to inform her that her stock purchase just closed. As she's all, "Hurray! I'm way richer now!", Beverly Ann bellows her name and is mystified when 1) Blair seems to have no idea who she is, and 2) Blair doesn't have the ability to see Santa and (understandably) thinks that this odd stranger who has suddenly appeared in her house is suffering from a mental disorder. Beverly Ann unhelpfully explains that she's talking to Santa Claus, which prompts Blair to pick up the phone to dial 911...so Beverly Ann hastily introduces herself as Edna Garrett's sister, and assumes that she must have mentioned her 'cause she knows a lot of stuff about her and the other three Facts gals. Blair says she vaguely recalls Edna talking about her sister - just as Tootie returns home a few seconds later. When she looks confused by the presence of Beverly Ann, Blair cautions, "Humor her. She knows things." Tootie complains that her makeup bag spilled open just as she was meeting Jeff's parents, and that her bottle of nail polish spilled all over Jeff's mother's new suede shoes. This resulted in everyone screaming at each other before Jeff decided to call off the engagement, to which Beverly asks, "Why didn't you use Casper the Friendly Ghost?" Santa reminds her again that since the premise of this episode is that she never came to Peekskill, she wouldn't have been around to give Tootie the more securely latched Casper lunchbox. Tootie declares that she's ready to start seeing other guys, and Beverly Ann asks Santa to transport her back to the shelter so that she can ask Jo to talk some sense into the nitwit.
As soon as they're instantaneously zapped back to the shelter, Natalie rushes in to make a phone call to her editor to inform him that she just witnessed a burglary in a jewelry store. A few seconds later, two police officers enter the shelter and place Natalie arrest 'cause apparently she matches the description of one of the perps: a brown-haired woman wearing a green sweater. Beverly Ann hastily points out that Natalie's green sweater wouldn't have been visible to eyewitnesses 'cause she left home with her coat on, but Santa points out that since she wasn't around to mend the ripped sleeve, Natalie was mis-identified as a jewel thief.
Santa returns Beverly Ann to the residence for a superfluous encounter with the generally superfluous Pippa, who's all punked out in a scarily voluminous yellow and pink mohawk 'do and tiger print jacket. An appalled Beverly Ann asks her if the Eastland admin lets her go to school like that...and when Pippa flippantly says she has no time for school, Beverly Ann reminds her that the only reason she was permitted to stay with them was for the purpose of getting a private education. Pippa's all 'whatevs' and says she's off to "veg out with some headbangers".
An irked Blair tells Beverly Ann that even though she's Edna's sister, she can't just barge into her house any time she wants - but Beverly Ann tells her she's here on an urgent matter: Natalie has just been hauled off to jail for jewel thievery. Blair says that even though she's broke 'cause of the ill-fated stock purchase she made earlier, she'd be happy to write a check (which might bounce) in order to spring her friend from the clink. Beverly Ann applauds her selflessness, then summons Santa Claus to return her to the shelter...and when she abruptly vanishes, a befuddled Blair can't help wondering if she lost her money and her marbles all in the same day.
Back at the shelter, the orphan children have assembled for their annual Christmas party. Beverly Ann spots Andy and asks him what in blazes he's doing here, and he stares back at her confusedly and tells her he was brought here with the rest of his fellow orphans. Beverly Ann chides Santa for this cruelty - just as Andy reveals that Jo never showed up at the orphanage to pick them up. Beverly Ann says that that can't be 'cause she saw her leave with the van keys...but then Santa points out that the van keys are still hanging on their regular hook 'cause in this It's a Wonderful Life dimension, Jo never actually arrived at the shelter.
Tootie bursts into the shelter decked out in black and tells Andy she just saw the accident site where Jo skidded off the road while riding her motorcycle and perished at the scene. As a wigged out Beverly Ann processes that tragic news, Santa points out to her that everyone's life is is terrible as a result of her never having come to Peekskill. Beverly Ann sobs as she pleads with him to turn everything back to the way it was, 'cause she now sees what a monumental difference her presence has made in the lives of the Facts gang.
Back to reality..
Jo arrives at the shelter with the orphans, and Beverly Ann gives her a long hug and says that her palpable look of relief is a looooong story she uncharacteristically doesn't feel like sharing at the moment. A few seconds later, Natalie, Andy, Tootie, and Pippa arrive, and Beverly Ann is thrilled to see them all and confirms that everything in their lives is back to their default settings:
Blair arrives at the shelter wheeling in a wagon filled with Christmas gifts for everyone...and I'll take that to assume she narrowly avoided a financial calamity when Beverly Ann's incessant phone yapping prevented her from getting through to her stockbroker in time.
Natalie credits Beverly Ann for always doing nice things for them...and as Beverly Ann tearfully thanks her for the kind words, Andy tells her he's totes up for going to Appleton to celebrate their first Christmas together. Cue the orphans, who begin singing Silent Night...and the Facts gang joins in while smilingly holding hands.
Beverly Ann asks Jo what happened to the Santa Claus she hired to help out at the shelter, and Jo scrunches her face perplexedly and says she didn't hire any Santa...and Beverly Ann chews on that as she finds a red Santa glove tucked between the couch cushions and stares dreamily into space with a knowing 'Atta boy, Clarence' type wink.
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