A New Jersey family was taken aback when they received an anonymous note that criticized them for their "lazy" Christmas decorations, the Cherry Hill Courier-Post reports.
On Christmas Eve, the Beattys, who live in Haddonfield, allegedly received a note that mocked the blue string lights the family put on a topiary bush in honor of a family member's service in the New York City Police Department. Along with the note came a "complimentary" box of 100 white string lights.
The anonymous note, which came from unnamed members of the "S & V Panel," knocked the Beattys for a "lack of a neat, organized and/or classy Christmas lighting" and a "display of light shows, projectors, star lights and/or any other fake and lazy Christmas decorations."
The writers of the note said they had previously lived in the neighborhood but would continue to "evaluate" residents' Christmas decorations.
"You have earned this dubious 'award' based on certain Christmas flaws that we need improved as noted above," the note continued. "While we appreciate your efforts, we on the S&V Panel strive for Christmas excellence and perfection."
The message didn't sit well with members of the Beatty family, including Angela Beatty, who told the newspaper that they had been going through a rough time.
"It was the rudest and most ignorant award from my neighbors," she said.
Beatty revealed that the family had lost a beloved pet dog, is taking care of an ill relative and was just involved in a car accident.
"I’ve had an awful year, so getting this letter hit a nerve," she said.
A photo of the note was shared on Twitter by a staff writer at the Cherry Hill Courier-Post and, in turn, provoked condemnation from fellow Twitter users.
"It shouldn’t matter that they are grieving a loss and going through a struggle - NO ONE has the right to judge the way THEIR home is decorated!" one person wrote in response. "They pay the mortgage and they alone have the decision to decorate as they wish judgement free."
It shouldn’t matter that they are grieving a loss and going through a struggle - NO ONE has the right to judge the way THEIR home is decorated! They pay the mortgage and they alone have the decision to decorate as they wish judgement free.— MG (@mabel425) December 26, 2019