Preview of the Art for our Relocation Book!

October 22, 2011


There has been nothing new on this blog for awhile, I have been at the drawing board, literally! I am going to post the cover and two pages  of our upcoming book on relocation…I think you all have stories about PCS (permanent change of station, for those of you outside the Military)

This is the cover…as you can see, moving can be difficult. The tone of this book is to help kids know they are not alone in not wanting to leave behind what they know, but that good things can come of it. Paula has written this in her famous rhyming style, and it is fabulous!

The story title is Little Daisy’s Worst/Best Day! I don’t want to give it all away, but do want to let you know that is a true story, that the author Paula Johnson experienced, as Daisy had to leave her home full of foster kids (social services said too many dogs,) and Paula and Barry took Daisy to live with them on the farm.

All the feelings of sad , mad, getting used to things, and finally acceptance, good memories and positive outcomes are there for parents and kids to discuss.


What kids can resist wriggling, soft, sweet puppies? The story begins with 9 of them!





The long scary ride to a new place far away. Not only far, but also different! You can see that Daisy is not too thrilled, but as it does in real life, the new that we resist, can be the best!

Well, that is all I will share right now! I have lots of painting yet to do! We would love to hear your stories of kids and PCS adventures if you want to share!


We are hoping to publish by early March! We will keep you posted!

New Look for the We Serve Too! series!!

October 5, 2011


We are excited to give you a preview of the new look to our series of books for Military kids! Soon we will have a set of 4

1.We Serve Too! A Child’s Deployment Book

2.We Serve Too! A Child’s Reunion Book

3.We Serve Too! The Homecoming Box (Sustainment)

4.We Serve Too! Little Daisy’s Worst /Best Day (a relocation, or moving book)

We love the bright colors and how they will look on a child’s bookshelf. We would love to hear what you think of the new look!

Here they are :

A New Soldier, and Some Free Books…

September 12, 2011

Well, we have been a Military family for a number of years now, and soon we will have a new soldier in the family. Our youngest is about to graduate from Basic Combat Training at Ft. Sill Oklahoma.  BCT is that process where boys become men and civilians become soldiers. They never come out the way they went in.

Now youngest son is on the path to a new journey in the Army. Life is good, busy and as always- requiring much faith and humor.

Paula and I will be travelling to Ft. Sill for this momentous occasion. We are going to be bringing some books with us, and if you are at Ft.  Sill, please contact us. We would like to give away a few books to the kids there. There will be a limited number of books , so first ones to contact us will get them!

We plan to have 12 books to give away, 4 deployment books, 4 reunion books, 4Homecoming box books. You will not know which title you will get…so surprise!

You can e-mail us at, that works better than comments here (since this does not go directly to our e-mail for some reason)  Write us your name, number and ages of your children (if you want to send names we can sign books for them.) You will have to pick up the books on post while we are there Sept 29 or 30. We will give you more information when you contact us. We can’t wait to meet you!


Free Parent Guides for those with military kids!

June 7, 2011


We would like to make you aware of the parents guides available for We Serve Too! A Child’s Deployment Book , and We Serve Too! A Childs’ Reunion Book. Deployment and Reunion bring up many questions for children and concerns for the adults who love them. With our free parents guides, you get the story word for word,page by page. There are suggestions of ways to  respond to questions. I want to give you a peek at what you can expect when you go to the link I will post here and access the guides. One of the first pages of our deployment guide goes like this:

Daddy’s unit was deployed his work is far away, and though we are not overjoyed a soldier must obey. The Army said we couldn’t go and Dad said wait right here and wait for me till I get back in just about a year.~ What does it mean that a soldier must obey? A soldier takes an oath, a special promise that he will go wherever the military sends him to protect our country. This is an important promise that every soldier makes. ~ How long is a year? Use the picture   to explain that a year is the time from one birthday to the next ( a child’s birthday is an important date for them) Use the seasons to go through it, e.g. the birthday is September you could say that is in the fall, ~ What things do you like to do in the fall? Winter? Spring? Summer? ~ What do you think the people in the story are feeling? ~ How did you feel when you were told how long your parent would be gone? ~ What things will the family miss doing together? ~ How can they make it easier to make Dad a part of the things they are doing?


A Page in the Parent Guide 2 or the

Reunion Book goes like this:

We all need some time for our family to mend, but I promise you things will get better again. I was not here for Christmas, it broke my heart too. (He picked up Ted Teddy and matched a lone shoe.) But our country called me and it hurt little dear, to know I would be gone when you needed me here. Let children know there is a bigger picture. You are serving your country and though you wanted to be there, your job is important for the Family (it is how they get what they need), for the people of the country where you deployed (you protect and defend people wherever you serve), and for our country (this nation cannot maintain its freedom without you).It is important to let children know you did miss them and the pain of separation is not only theirs, but yours too. This is a sacrifice you all make as a family. You might promise each other you won’t indulge in self pity and resentment. Make a team pact. Use this teachable moment to train them to think outside themselves toward the needs of others too.Discuss mending, what it means- and some ways that your family can mend. Incorporate your ideas naturally into your daily living as much as possible. As you model being OK, they will be OK  too.

This is just a small sample. You may go to our page get the free download.  Click on Book Guide 1(deployment) or Book Guide 2(reunion) . From our home page, click on resources, then parent/leader and you will get to the same page, scroll down to the book downloads. You can use it to talk with kids, open some discussion and help you to think through these things as well. We hope you find them helpful and that you and your little ones will enjoy the resources at We Serve Too!

April Month of the Military Child…Ways to give them Honor?

March 29, 2011


Kids… They bring us tears, laughter, joy and heartache. We give them our hearts, our homes, our lives …

April is the month  in which we honor the children of our Military Families. These children sacrifice the time that they would have with a beloved parent ,as that parent works to defend our freedoms, our livelihood, our way of life as we know it. Without these brave warriors, we would not have the safety and privileges that we enjoy as a nation.

So , how can we help when these children,home waiting for a parent to return?How do we help them look at the year ahead missing that important person? How can we help as a Family is apart and the parent at home shoulders all the responsibility? Here are a few ideas, and I hope that you will post others that I have not thought of!

* The We Serve Too! books are great for starting conversations and honoring the feelings and lives of Military kids. Read the stories, and check the parent guides for good conversation starters. Here is the link to our website

* If you are not the parent or close relative of a Military Family, consider a box of books to be donated to the children of a nearby Military installation, school on post, or daycare center. The books are great for educating civilian children on the sacrifices made by kids with parents that are deployed or returning too.Local school libraries are another place that donations are appreciated.

* The Homecoming Box books make a great activity for a group of children or for one child. The book explains the Homecoming Box, and there are instructions in the back on making the boxes that become a family treasure.

* Host a Homecoming Box party or FRG activity and let the kids work together. It is always good to let the kids talk with one another as they share the same journey.

*Here is the link to the childrens page on the website of Operation We Are Here. There are lots of resources on it , and I bet you will find some ideas here about things to do with the kids.

* Taking time to talk with children can enlighten you and also provide clues as to ways to honor them. Ask about school, friends, homework. Do they need  homework help, time away, an outing with one of their friend in tow? Maybe they need to practice their fast ball, get a ride to dance class, just talk to someone about what it is like missing an absent parent.

* be supportive by going to the school play, the science fair, the choir program. You will enjoy them more than you think, even if your kids (and maybe especially so ) if your kids are grown!

* If you are family, or a close friend, let them know that you miss their dad or mom too.

* Offer help or meals to the family. Not just “call me”, but ” I am bringing dinner, what night this week is best?” Supporting the Family helps kids feel secure.

* It doesn’t have to been hard, take a lot of time or money. An ice cream cone, a cute sticker for that child that sits behind you in church, a smile and a “thank you for your parents service” , can let a child feel the pride of being part of a Military family.

Please post an idea, so that many can make a difference for kids this month. April is a month to remember, honor and express our gratitude for the people who give so much.

In the words of a soldier: “If you help my child, you help me. Nothing is more important to me than that.


The Homecoming Box…is ready for you!

March 24, 2011


Well, our newest book is out and ready to guide those little hands into making a Homecoming Box of their own! The kids above have made their own boxes and are now using them to keep life stories in, until a deployed parent returns.  This new addition to the We Serve Too! series of books for Military Families is colorful fun, teaching children that they can make a family treasure .

The cover shows our two We Serve Too! kids (our grandchildren) looking quizzically at a decorated box. The story shows a group of children who have deployed parents learning the purpose and joys of The Homecoming Box.

I would love to hear from parents , teachers , counselors or FRG leaders  who decide to use The Homecoming Box activity. Paula and I have done a couple of workshops on these, and the kids come up with some really wonderful ideas. I know that the boxes make an impact and that Families can find new ways to tell the important stories of life as they face deployment, sustainment and reunion.

To see more about the homecoming Box, click here

New Year for Camo-N-Kids!

January 16, 2011

Wow, so much has been going on I realized my last post was about Christmas cookies! Sorry all!

Paula and I have been invited to go to San Antonio for an  Army National Guard Yellow Ribbon event the first weekend in February. That means we have lots of work to do to get ready.

We are nearly finished with our newest book The Homecoming Box, which we will be presenting there in Texas. It is going to print, we hope by the end of February, and so the San Antonio group will be the first to pre-view it.  I have had so much fun illustrating this one!

The We Serve Too! kids are growing at about the rate of our grandchildren. As I draw, I can’t help it, they have a life of their own and they are getting older.  I am able to hold back on the growth  somewhat with the drawings (wish I could keep the real thing small a bit longer!)

The kids now have a new batch of friends that are involved in making The Homecoming Box. Our granddaughter Devon decided to name them . I will have to introduce them to you by name when we unveil the book after printing.

We will have a coloring page up on the website of our good friends at Operation We Are Here with all the new kids pictured too, later in February, in time for Valentines Day. Check that in in addition to all the other wonderful resources they have there.

One that our kids have found is fun in the Brat Town Bugle. You can download pages that are like a family newspaper, and then the kids can fill in and send off to their deployed loved one. It is fun for the kids because they can choose what pages to do, sports, school, events, pets, and many others. Here is the link to their menu page for the kids:

Happy New Year (OK, so it was two weeks ago…better late than never!)

New Book on the Drawing Board!

September 24, 2010

Today I am drawing pages of kids. The kids sometimes turn out as I expect and sometimes, like real kids, they are full of surprises!
Here is a sneak peek at a drawing for our newest addition to the We Serve Too! series

This one is about the Homecoming Box…so stay tuned and we will share more as we go! If you are wondering what a Homecoming Box is, visit our website at http// There you will find instructions to make your own box!

Ft. Carson: We Serve Too!, Tradition, and Homecoming!

June 6, 2010

This weekend Paula and I had the privilege to go to Ft. Carson and donate 500 books to the little ones. We read our stories, asked some questions and got some wonderful hugs! Here are a couple of the people that helped us do that, friends from the West Childcare Development Center on Ft. Carson, as they assemble the books with dogtags to pass out to the children there

After the passing out of the books , we heard of a tradition there are Ft. Carson that we had never heard of before. We were told that if we came back to the post late at night, 300 or more soldiers were coming home from Afghanistan! The tradition is, that as the busloads of soldiers come in the gates, the firetrucks, lights flashing , horns blowing, drench the buses with water, symbolizing the washing off of the dirt of foreign soil and welcoming them back home.

Because this particular homecoming was happening inthe middle of the night, families anxiously awaited their arrival at the event center about a half mile from the gate’s roundabout. The only ones to witness the firetrucks and that part of the celebration, were one little boy and his mother, and these two grandmas!

As we joined the families of our brave service-members, we were struck with the beauty of the welcome. Prayer, the Army song, a reverence for the completed mission and thanks to the families who had endured or lost. Then a joyous reunion of smiles, snapshots, laughter, hugging and tears. What a privilege to be there.

As we left I thanked a young soldier and asked if he would mind if I gave him a hug. I had never gotten to see the homecoming of my own boy, twice from Iraq. He obliged me.

Welcome home each and every one. Thank you, from all of us, for the work you do and have done. May God bless and keep you, and your families!

The Coloring Books are here..Yippeeee! Get your Crayons Ready!

October 29, 2009

Covers WST ABC's [3]

Here it is! We are so excited! This is a great coloring book, substantial in size and feel, and just fun!
We think that kids will love these. The Military phonetic alphabet is great for them to learn, the coloring pages full of humor , with the well loved characters of We Serve too!

Since my grandkids are the We Serve Too! kids, I can’t wait to give them each a coloring book of their own tonight, so cool to have a coloring book with you as the star!

These books would be great for a birthday party, a pre-deployment kids day, a way to keep military kids busy on vacation, a fun way to introduce civilian kids to some things military, a way to teach kids a new way to clarify what they say , a way for new recruits to have fun learning the military alphabet! On an on I can think of ways these coloring books could be used.

The books are 3.00 each, which makes them an affordable way to entertain the kids.
To order call Complete Book and Media at 1-800-986-1775