Newmarket mom receives letter from neighbour ‘frustrated’ with backyard noise by kids

Click to play video: 'Neighbour pens letter to Newmarket mom about her kids playing outside' Neighbour pens letter to Newmarket mom about her kids playing outside
WATCH ABOVE: A Toronto mom received an anonymous letter asking that her four small children keep the noise down while playing outside. Jamie Mauracher went to the home to test the kids in ‘full-backyard’ play mode to see if the complaints were justified – Mar 13, 2018

As a mother of four boys, Morgan DeCairos DeBoer admits life can get pretty loud.

“Phoenix is six, Quinn is four, Gabe is two and Benjamin is nine-months-old,” she told Global News on Tuesday. “They do get on each other’s nerves, they do have whiny [moments] of ‘stop it, don’t do that.'”

And sometimes, she said, her solution is to get them outside to burn off the extra energy.

“Kids shouldn’t always be indoors playing video games,” she said.

She never thought doing that would get her into hot water with her neighbours, however.

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Last Thursday, the family received an anonymous letter in their mailbox complaining about the noise her kids make while playing in the backyard.

“I am one of several neighbours who are frustrated with the frequent screaming and shrieking your children make while playing in your backyard…,” part of the letter read.

“… We encourage you to correct your child when he screams by saying, ‘please stop that yelling’ or something like that,” it continued.

“I mean, they get into spats and stuff like that but that’s when I yell ‘stop it, leave your brother alone,'” DeCarios DeBoer said. “If they were frequently screaming and shrieking, my baby wouldn’t sleep.”

Shocked to have received the complaint, and frustrated with the anonymity, DeCarios DeBoer said she would have preferred to have a conversation face to face.

“I would have said, ‘Hey my kids are outside getting healthy, if you have a problem … get better windows.'”

And while there seems to be at least one person upset by the boys’ outdoor playtime, other neighbours who live near the home told Global News on Tuesday they don’t mind it.

“When we are in the backyard we hear them, but it’s just kids being kids,” one neighbour told Global News.

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Regardless, the town of Newmarket said backyard noise — during the appropriate hours — is completely acceptable.

“We would not come by and cite someone for playing in their backyard,” Newmarket town clerk Lisa Lyons told Global News.

Meanwhile, back at the DeCairos DeBoer home, while the boys were running around and playing outside, Global News used a sound meter app to measure the level of noise. The boys hit just over 90 decibels — the equivalent of a lawnmower.

The town said that while they don’t take decibels into consideration, that is within reasonable noise limits.

Something that DeCairos DeBoer said she already knew.

“I feel like my kids aren’t any louder than any other kids in the neighbourhood,” she said. “Kids do this [points to two of the boys arguing and crying] every once and a while, you just have to deal with it.
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