One of the unspoken effects of winter in the garden is that a gardener loses control of her or his yard.
Normally, no one would dream of putting decorations in your yard without your explicit approval and consent for fear of the reprocussions if they did not consult you first. Where once (when the weather was warm) we are confined dictators who decree that this or that decoration or this or that plant is either suitable or unsuitable, winter and snow renders us powerless over our domain.
The winter comes and we are robbed of our omnipotent authority. Once snow falls, the unwashed masses (i.e. your family) feels that because your efforts are no longer visible in the yard, you are no longer in control. All out chaos breaks loose and the next thing you know your once elegant garden has become a breeding ground for snowmen.
Perhaps at one point in time in history this would have been a good thing. It may have been some quaint practice that involved children grabbing carrots and magical hats and dashing around town with assumedly demonically possesed live snowmen. But thanks to the artwork of Bill Watterson, snowmen of today are not so cute. This is because the children of today (mostly at the encouragement of their fathers who grew up reading the Calvin & Hobbs cartoon strip) have been given more twisted ideas.
So I came home yesterday from my holiday shopping to find that my husband and children had populated the yard with snowmen. I was enthusiastically told that there would have been more, but apparently they ran out of snow.
*sigh* I want control of my garden back. I want them to fear my gardening wrath. But for right now, I think the neighbors just fear us. Or at least wonder at our mental stability.