A new bike under his Christmas tree this year tops the list of holiday wishes for 10-year-old Jerry. His bike was stolen, but his mother works to support her family of three and there's not enough money to buy a new bike.
But Jerry can think of other things he'd like to brighten his holidays: Hot Wheels cars and Game Boy games among them.
His younger sister, Jasmine, 7, really wants a Cabbage Patch Kid doll and Barbies. She also likes Bratz dolls and wants new nail polish or a manicure set.
The youngest child in the family is just an infant, but he likes toys just the same. Eight-month-old Andre likes Barney the purple dinosaur. Musical toys and toys that make sounds are also ideal gifts for him.
Mr. and Mrs. J live in a small house in the county where they raised their two children. Life has taken a turn for the worse for this elderly couple since they were in a serious car accident.
Mrs. J had severe injuries from the accident and now has kidney failure and takes dialysis three times per week. She is weak and must use a walker inside her home. When she goes out in public, she relies on a wheelchair for aid.
Mr. J. was his wife's primary caregiver until he became ill with cancer. He has lost more than 30 pounds and is having difficulty taking care of himself and his wife.
Christmas gifts -- and household essentials -- would be a welcome blessing to this couple. Mr. J. wants sweats in size large. Women's sweats in medium also would be good gifts for Mrs. J. Pajamas for both would be good, and a full-size blanket for their bed would help keep them warm.
Gift certificates to grocery stores and the pharmacy would be helpful so they could buy items like Ensure or Boost.
Donations can be dropped off at the Southeast Missourian offices. Monetary donations can be mailed to P.O. Box 4, Cape Girardeau, Mo. 63702-0004.