The grinch is basically good at heart?

Associated Press

SEATTLE — What kind of grinch would steal the Grinch? Not to mention the reindeer, Santa Claus in a sleigh and thousands of colored lights in a home Christmas display?

That’s what Mike White and Donna Jasmer want to know after waking up to find their holiday decorations missing Monday morning.

"I hope they get a lump of coal for Christmas," White said. "I mean, you put so much into it, and something like this happens. It’s just a shame."

Jasmer was especially distressed by the loss of the lead character in the Dr. Seuss book, "How the Grinch Stole Christmas." She got up early the day after Thanksgiving to buy the inflated green 8-foot glowing character on sale for $49.99, $20 off the regular price.

It was still a major expenditure. She has been unable to report to work as a work-release corrections officer since being injured in the back, neck and leg in a car accident on Nov. 7.

Jasmer, a mother of five and a foster mother of two, has become known for kitschy, over-the-top decorations since she moved into the brown-shingled house on Queen Anne Hill in 1974.

At Easter, dozens of fake bunnies and more than 300 dyed eggs adorn the yard. For Halloween there are toy bats and ghosts, pumpkins galore and a skeleton in a casket. Then there are Valentine’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day and the Fourth of July.

Three years ago, the Jasmer-White home won the Crown of the Hill decorating contest.

"You always know what holiday is coming," said Andrea Linsky, who lives across the street. "It’s a labor of love, and they have fun with it. I’m glad they do it."

A few years ago, two toy soldiers were stolen, but they were returned soon afterward by police who knew where they belonged.

Jasmer hasn’t notified the police this time.

"People are basically good," she said, "and I’m not going to believe otherwise. If I don’t call the police, maybe they’ll bring it all back."

Copyright ©2001 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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