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When is it 'too soon' to decorate for Christmas?

Thanksgiving still may be a few weeks away, but for one Texas family, the holiday season is already in full swing. Claudia and Nick Simonis of San Antonio decided to put up a few Christmas decorations at their home in the Lakeside at Canyon Springs subdivision on Nov. 1. But three days later, their homeowners association (HOA) came calling. The Grinch-like letter demanded the family take their decorations down until a more appropriate time, but it didn’t say when, exactly.

“I felt shocked and angered,” Nick Simonis told CNN. “The HOA has so much time on their hands.”

The notice read, “Maintenance — Holiday Decorations Need To Be Removed.” The letter also asked the family to “please remove the snowman until closer to the holiday season.” The HOA has not responded to CNN’s requests for comment.

The allegedly offensive decorations consisted of a few inflatables, some reindeer, a Santa hanging from a helicopter and a large snowman in the front yard. The Simonises were the first ones in the neighborhood to put up holiday decor.

“We’re in the Christmas spirit just like anybody else,” Nick Simonis said. “We love the holidays, and my wife is very active in it.”

It wasn’t just over-eagerness and the Christmas spirit that compelled the Simonis family to decorate early; Claudia Simonis is eight months pregnant, and her due date is none other than Christmas Day.

“I feel kind of heavy, so the earlier we can put out the decorations, the better,” Claudia Simonis told CNN affiliate WOAI. “Because probably in two more weeks, I’m not going to be able to build all this.”

A snowy scandal

A lit-up snowman glows outside a red-lit house for holidays The HOA took particular offense to an inflatable snowman in the family’s front yard. (Photo: RobDun/Shutterstock)

The family also has two other children, ages 7 and 2, who are looking forward to a holiday at home after spending last Christmas traveling.

“We just wanted to get everything set up, so that way, we can relax,” Nick Simonis said. “If the baby comes early, we don’t have to worry about it.”

It’s a mystery as to who alerted their HOA, but the family isn’t too worried about it. In fact, other neighbors have now joined in on the holiday decorating as a way to show solidarity.

“We got a lot of support from our neighbors,” Claudia Simonis added. “Every single one of them supported us by putting up their decorations and posting messages.”

The Simonises aren’t stopping, either. They plan to put up Christmas lights over the weekend, and will continue to keep decorating. Other neighbors like Charles Minton are getting into the spirit, too. He just placed a few penguins and an oversized “Merry Christmas” ornament in his front yard.

“I don’t think this should be an issue,” Minton told WOAI. “These are the holidays. This is what we do. We take care of our neighbors. That’s what a neighborhood is about.”

When is it ‘too soon’ to decorate for Christmas?

Though there’s no official timeline for Christmas decor, for one Texas family, early November was unacceptable to their homeowners association.


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