In the illustrated world of Cookie Combs, crocodiles pose for photos, a moose is a child’s best friend and barnyard animals perform ballet.
Animals are an important part of her life, and her children’s books.
When it comes to charity, they’re an inspiration. When Cookie and her husband began publishing books of children's poetry in recent years, they decided to donate their proceeds to The Nature Conservancy and World Wildlife Federation.
“We’re concerned about the world, the animals and the plants,” Cookie said.
“If we don’t do something about certain areas of the world, they’ll disappear,” said Bill, her husband.
Bill and Cookie are both members of the Conservancy’s Legacy Club. Their sense of charity runs deep in their lives, as do the arts.
Cookie is a former concert pianist, which she says helped her develop her sense of rhythm. Bill, her partner in publishing, is a retired pastor and former Boeing worker. They live in Washington.
Cookie began writing children’s poetry as a hobby, and now has several books to her name, which have garnered positive reviews. She illustrates her books as well. Her husband, William, takes care of all the technical aspects of publishing.
Their friend Mitsuko Nakata has translated Cookie’s poetry books into Japanese, and into Japanese and English compilations designed to help young students learn a second language. E-books are also available.
The couple is interested in expanding their network of charitable giving and exploring new revenue streams for nonprofits.
“You’d be surprised how much it unlocks a person’s spirit to be able to give.” Bill said. He encourages anyone interested in exploring this topic with him to get in touch.
Below is an excerpt from Cookie’s book Chuckle Poems for Kids. Click here to visit her website.
I would rather have an elephant
Than a bicycle or a scooter;
And because its memory is superb
It’s better than a computer.
I guess it would take a lot of food
To feed a pet of that size;
But it could have all of my broccoli
That Mother always buys.
All the kids would envy me
Riding my pet to school.
When it got dirty, the elephant could bathe
In our community pool.
The only real problem I can see
With having a pet of this kind
Is what to do with the stuff in the streets
That comes from the elephant’s behind.
Katherine Sather works as digital marketing specialist for The Nature Conservancy.