The Appalling Effects of BULLYING – at WORK!

by Jenny Holt

The Emotional and Physical Impact of Workplace Bullying

Did you know a higher percentage of people are bullied in the workplace than in schools? It’s hard to imagine, isn’t it? When we think about bullying, we always think of the picked on kid in school. Our culture is geared toward it and to trying to deal with it. Yet while 20% of schoolchildren are subject to bullying, according to the CDC, this number rises to 25% in the workplace.

There is no guarantee that the school bullies and bullied go on to resume these roles within the workplace. However, one thing which is consistent is the impact bullying has on both mental wellbeing and physical health.

It can create feelings akin to PTSD, including anxiety, depression, more reserved and conserved behavior, and also increases the risk of heart attacks, health problems, and increases the risk of suicide.

Workers, managers, and owners should all be aware of the consequences of bullying from a wide range of viewpoints. This runs from the health and wellbeing of individuals to its detriment on the team and company performance as a whole. This expert guide from Why Team Building will give you more information on all aspects of workplace bullying and its impact.

Note from Ruth Elliott, Founder of EDU DESIGNS and GoMommyGO®:

A BIG thank you to Jenny Holt for contributing this important article.

Bullying is such a crucial subject for all of us, that I created 3 Anti-Bullying posters for kids you can download for FREE, here!

Posted in Character Development | Comments Off on The Appalling Effects of BULLYING – at WORK!

Kids Need Your HELP!


GoMommyGO® has been creating media for kid’s character development since 2003!

Kids are WORTH it. They need to know they have a future and a hope!

We are scraping bottom to do all we can, but our non profit needs YOU!

Will you help us meet the expense of reprinting our books?

I have something for you when you do. Keep reading!

Gosh – If each one of our subscribers gave just one dollar, we would have enough to reprint our most-requested books: See What You’re Looking At, The Richest Kid In The Poor HouseThe Night PrincessLittle Blossom and Somebody Needs You, for the coming year!
All five of our books are out-of-print, frequently sought after, and costly to reproduce. 
When we do sell our books, it is at just-above-cost.  We usually donate one set of books to the library of every school we visit, and have done such a good job of giving, we are now out of them.
WHATEVER you can spare – ANY amount – will help. $5, 10, 20,_?

I have a special BONUS for you if you can contribute.

We recently earned the ‘Top Non-Profit’s Award’ from Great Non Profits and one person commented:
“Art – and the arts – can have such powerful benefits to children. Many go through school with limited access to art…Edu Designs provides these opportunities… I am so grateful that they do…”

Schools, teachers, parents and students need inspiration and enthusiasm for learning.  And kids need tools to succeed.

We offer just that. But doing so is expensive.

Please  click the button below to donate:

With your donation, I have a special gift for your kids.

After you’ve completed your donation of any amount, don’t close the window right away – WAIT a second or two – until it redirects back to EDU DESIGNS. You’ll be able to download 100+ GoMommyGO® Activity Cards to save and print! (Read how to use them, here)
Since nearly one hundred percent of our funding comes from the generosity of of the community, it is no exaggeration to say that your support is truly making a difference in the lives of people across the world.
Thank you in advance for whatever you can do.


Ruth Elliott-Hilsdon 
Founder, Director EDU DESIGNS, a public-benefit nonprofit charity.
CreatorGoMommyGO®, the Registered Trademark of EDU DESIGNS



EDU DESIGNS is a CA Non Profit 501(c)(3) Corporation. Fed. Tax ID # 261576531   GoMommyGO® is a Registered Trademark of EDU DESIGNS
EDU DESIGNS_IRS_Letter of Determination

Posted in Character Development | Comments Off on Kids Need Your HELP!

Help your Child ORGANIZE! (Help YOU, too!)


with my NEW Activity cards*

Download 90+ Cards with ANY donation!

Download Free with any donation!

Use them to make a CHART to show


1- Tape a strip of stiff paper (or cardboard) across poster board to make a pocket to hold activity cards.

Top row is for things to DO.

Bottom row is where to put activity cards when they are DONE.

Kids (and YOU) can keep track of what they need to do next! 

You can choose the order of activities, behaviors or chores from over 100 Activity Cards.  For instance:


How to get Activity cards:

Get  all 11 pages that include 100+ activity cards with any donation to EDU DESIGNS, using the button below. Just download and print up the activity cards yourself on 8.5×11 card stock or business card stock!

(The images below shows how the cards are arranged 10 to a page,  to print up and cut out yourself.)

After you donate – WAIT! Keep the window open and you will automatically be directed to a new page that includes all 11 pages of activity cards and instructions to print them. When the file appears, right click, or select download to save it to your computer.

Email me if you have any questions!

Here’s to getting organized!



Founder and Director of EDU DESIGNS, Creator of GoMommyGO® <>


Posted in Character Development | Comments Off on Help your Child ORGANIZE! (Help YOU, too!)


Before I ever had kids, I thought I knew all about child rearing. After they started coming along, however, all pride went out the window and humility took it’s place.

It’s been almost half a century since my first darling baby (of seven) was born. Along the way there were seven thousand challenges to learn from, and approximately 36,000 diapers to change.

I read so many books that claimed to have the answer to ‘this’ problem or ‘that’ problem, but only addressed a certain type of child with a particular temperament. I would think to myself, “Well, that might work in their situation, but MY kid is different!”

It was the actual experience of raising my seven kids that gave me a broader insight into what works and what doesn’t work.

Each time I found another solution to a new dilemma, I’d think, “Why didn’t anyone tell me this in the first place? Somebody should be sharing it with other parents so they won’t have to make the same mistakes I did!”

Well, finally someone did come along after my kids grew up: ME!

I am now compiling all my wisdom and practical tips from decades of hands-on experience in real life parenting into a book to share with you.

But I want to make sure it addresses your problems.

I know there are struggles you deal with that are specific to you, so I’ve created a short survey to help me target those areas that are most needed.

Will you share the things YOU struggle with?

It should only take a minute or two to complete.

I want my book to address YOUR issues.

Will you fill out my short survey?

If you do, you will be the first to get an advance review copy of my new book as soon as it’s ready. It will be yours for free.

I need your input, to make sure I include your concerns.

Please fill out my survey!

Here is the link:


Thank you for your attention and your time.


Ruth Elliott-Hilsdon
Director of EDU DESIGNS; Creator of GoMommyGO®
Since 2007 EDU DESIGNS has been creating media for children’s character development. GoMommyGO® is the registered trademark of EDU DESIGNS.
Read More about EDU DESIGNS…

Thank you for your help.  Because of outstanding reviews we were awarded the ‘Great Non Profit’s’ Badge for 2016!

Posted in Character Development | Comments Off on SHARE YOUR STRUGGLES!

SEE What You’re LOOKING At!

Thousands of children, their parents and teachers benefit from what we do. In addition to creating media for character development, we bring the ARTS to children, through my groundbreaking Art Book!


See What You're Looking At! © Ruth Elliott

Now you can download my 120 page Art book, free:


Fill out the form below to get it.

I appreciate you,



Ruth Elliott-Hilsdon, Founder, Director of EDU DESIGNS; Creator of GoMommyGO®

PS – I hate spam as much as you do and will NEVER share your email address with anyone!

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Roscoe the Squirrel


When my son was little and first saw this, he said,”Mom, did this used to be YOU?”

Way back in B.C. (Before Children) I raised a baby squirrel. Here’s a photo of me and Roscoe, when he was around four months old. 

Because he had fallen out of a tree as a newborn, he was afraid to climb trees at first. It inspired me to write this song:


Roscoe’s Song, © Ruth Elliott, 1974


Oh Little Darlin’ don’t worry about the trees,

Just keep on climbin’ as far as you can see,

Past life’s pinecones of plenty, life’s needles of pain,

Oh little darlin’ don’t worry ‘bout the next branch.

Too soon shall it come by the way.

By the way, don’t worry little darlin’,

Little darlin’ don’t worry ‘bout the way.


We’ve shared life’s journey so far,

Don’t turn your tail and run,

at the first shadow of a bird passing overhead,

Just keep travlin’ on,

So high, so very high above,

So high, above the trees.

(Repeat first verse)tinyroscoe3x4vert

I tell the whole story in my Art Book for Kids,
“SEE WHAT YOU’RE LOOKING AT!” (the first Art textbook to reference the CA Math standards!) 


Find out how you can get a free download of my art book at this link:


Keep Climbing!


Ruth Elliott-Hilsdon, Founder and Director of EDU DESIGNS



Posted in Character Development | Comments Off on Roscoe the Squirrel


Why is it that some people seem to have more empathy than others? And some seem to have none at all. How did we get this way? Is it nature? Is it nurture?

Neuroscientist Dr. Marco Iacoboni, author of Mirroring People, the new Science of how we connect with others” tells how scientists have discovered the brains’ capacity for what they call ‘mirroring’: the ability to feel something that happens to another as though it’s happening to us!  

According to Dr. Iacoboni, “…whenever you expose kids to any form of violence, through media, through video games or through films, then you put these kids at risk of expressing violence with their own acts because they’re going to imitate that.

What we call ‘empathy’ happens when our brains light up in the same areas in our brains that mirror what the other person is feeling. One of the earliest scientific observations found a monkey’s brain fired up seeing someone licking an ice cream cone as though he were eating it himself!

Dr. Iacoboni says, “All in all, we come to understand others via imitation, and imitation shares functional mechanisms with language and empathy.”

To me  that sounds like: “MONKEY SEE, MONKEY DO!”

Most of us are innately wired to feel for each other.

It’s no wonder that most spiritual faiths embrace some kind of teaching that expresses “Treat others the way YOU want to be treated”.

But how can we teach that to children?

What kids need is more GOOD examples.

Our kids will only be teachable for a little while, and they are learning from YOU things that are ‘more caught than taught’.   Dr. Iacoboni said, ”The way we understand other people’s feelings is by simulating in our brain the same activity we have when we experience those emotions.”

Turn off the TV and involve them with the day to day things that you need to do. Let them ‘mirror’ what YOU are doing. It’ll be more fun if you work together. They’ll learn to help and their fun will be so much better when they are done. And they’ll be proud of themselves.

I know you care about educating children for good character, or you wouldn’t be reading this.

If you ARE a parent, here are some links you can use to help you find things fast on GoMommyGO®:

 1- FREE Behavior charts on GoMommyGO (the 8 1/2 X 11 charts you download, customize and print up yourself)

2 –  When you click on any image on THIS PAGE it takes you to what the images mean.


4 – And what to do when you need to give CONSEQUENSES for bad behavior.

 Many thanks for reading and caring about the future adults around you! For your gift of any amount, we have something special for you – Click here to find out what it is!

Kids and Parents need all the help they can get.

EDU DESIGNS and GoMommyGO® are there to help, providing materials for parents and teachers who can’t afford them.  We need YOUR help to do that!

Please donate!




Posted in Character Development, Child Development, Children, Education, Ethics and Character, Psychology | Comments Off on HOW KIDS LEARN EMPATHY

GET While You GIVE!

Monkey See - Monkey DO!

From EDU article: Monkey See – Monkey DO!

GET MY Art Textbook for kids FREE!

Does media influence children?
You know it does. 

From the time I was a child I have wanted to inspire kids to become BETTER people.

Since 2007 EDU DESIGNS has been “Building Brains And Hearts Through The Arts” by sharing positive educational materials with schools, teachers and students.    

All of us here at EDU DESIGNS are unpaid volunteers, giving what we can out of love. And our own pockets. 

Even if you are strapped for cash these days, I figured out THREE WAYS you can help us to help kids without donating a penny! 

Would you like to know how? 

YAY! I KNEW you would!

HERE are three ways to help:

1– WATCH “Somebody NEEDS You” – our 3 minute animated short that premiered at San Diego Comic-Con…and – read how we did it!


Click on the picture to open in YouTube


2LEAVE A REVIEW of the work we are doing, here.

Even just a few words from you, like: “Great Job!” or, “Keep up the good work!”,  give others a chance to hear about the work we do.

We are so happy we earn the Great Non Profit’s 2016 Top-Rated badge!

(Click on the picture below to leave your review. No need to create an account or login, just click “Post Review” when you are done.) 


3– If you buy things on Amazon, SHOP from this link,:

Amazon Smile (their charity) will donate 0.5% of your eligible purchases to EDU DESIGNS when you do! Bookmark (save) the link to shop from it each time, and you will give while you get, automatically! YAY!

 heart3-anim-best-2inx72dpi.gif️ To THANK YOU for caring,

Please accept a copy of my Art Book for kids! 


(Click on the picture below to get it)

❤Share it with those you love.
Donate it to your local school.

🌷Watch people thank you!

Kids need good examples to follow.

That’s something you can give free, too!

Warmest wishes,


Ruth Elliott-Hilsdon, Director of EDU DESIGNS; Creator of GoMommyGO®

Posted in Character Development | Comments Off on GET While You GIVE!



Give Kids what they REALLY need:


It starts when they’re small.

The Four Building Blocks of Character can be boiled down to these:






BUILDING BLOCK # 1 We learn to ASK or ADMIT 

When we learn to say, “PLEASE?” we ASK. In ASKING, we ADMIT our need for others! From the moment we were born we began asking – crying – for our needs to be met. The very fact of our existence is proof that someone answered that cry – cared about us enough to nurture, feed and protect us – or we wouldn’t be here. Sometimes we hate to admit we need other people. But relationships are the stuff of life! We ALL need each other, so it’s OK to ASK. Hopefully we learn to ask POLITELY!

PLEASE – teach kids to say PLEASE!

BB-04-thanksm-webBUILDING BLOCK # 2We learn to THANK!

When we realize we need others, we begin to be THANKFUL for what has been given us. We wouldn’t have anything, not even life itself, if it had not been first been GIVEN TO us!

THANK YOU for teaching kids to say“THANK YOU!”



Being human we all make mistakes. To APOLOGIZE requires humbling ourselves and ADMITTING we are not perfect. We can never grow further in our character until we can learn to say, “I’m Sorry.”  (See my little story ‘THE LAND of I’M SORRY’!)



After we admit we are not perfect, we can then say, “I FORGIVE YOU”, knowing that we also need forgiveness. How else can we get along in this world?


The habits we learn as children will stay with us a lifetime. Giving kids THE FOUR BUILDING BLOCKS OF CHARACTER will lay the foundation of a good life.

How many gang wars, world wars, marriage conflicts and sibling rivalries would be avoided if people just learned these four things:

ADMIT we need each other,

THANK others,

APOLOGIZE for our mistakes, and

FORGIVE one other!

“Habits are actions built up strong and tall.

Like bricks laid together to form a high wall.

When once they are built it is so hard to break them,

you’d better be careful about how you MAKE them!”  – Mr. Stevens*


You can order a complete set of 6 POSTERS on the FOUR BUILDING BLOCKS OF CHARACTER, and receive a bonus poster of the story, THE LAND OF “I’m SORRY”, too!



The complete set of 7 posters is $7.99.

Each poster is 8.5″x11″, suitable for framing.

Click the BUY NOW button below for secure ordering.


Choose # Sets


*P.S. Thanks to Mr. Stevens, a 5th Grade teacher! 

Kids and Parents need all the help they can get.

EDU DESIGNS and GoMommyGO® are there to help, providing materials for parents and teachers who can’t afford them.  We need YOUR help to do that!

Please donate!








Posted in behavior, Character Development, Child Development, Children, Psychology | Comments Off on FOUR BUILDING BLOCKS of CHARACTER!


Sun After Rain In NY, by Ruth Elliott-Hilsdon, 1968

Sun After Rain In NY, by Ruth Elliott-Hilsdon, 1968

They hit you sooner or later…

No way around it. Troubles hit you. Some financial. Some personal.

Like Rudyard Kipling said, how do you hold on when all about you are losing their heads and blaming it on you? Even more, how do you keep trials and troubles from your door? The answer is: You can’t.

If Character is defined as “what you are when no one is watching”, then there has to be that space within to return to that is untouched by the storms of life. The eye of the hurricane, the apex of the pendulum that remains steady while the weight is swinging below it – that place we can hold on to – and align our perspective to. Keep that as an anchor and don’t let go! You can make it. Take the time to find it if you haven’t already. You’ll need it.

I heard a great man once say,

“There are two paths before us: The GOOD and the PLEASANT. He who chooses the PLEASANT misses the mark.”

Please join me on the better road!



Ruth Elliott-Hilsdon


Investing in Children makes a better world.

Edu Designs is making a difference.

Posted in Character Development | Comments Off on CHARACTER is PREPARATION for the STORMS of LIFE!

Your Child NEEDS ‘Somebody NEEDS You’



My animated short is now a CHILDREN’S BOOK!

SNY-cover-amazonSOMEBODY NEEDS YOU has a powerful message that shows kids the character traits of caring and empathy for others!

Kids need to learn to be helpful. 

Don’t wait.

As the twig is bent, so grows the tree.

Help them learn to pay attention.


You’ll be glad you did. 

Your children will praise you. 

Your grandchildren will THANK YOU.

Kids will read the book and learn EMPATHY.

World PEACE will get a little closer.

And LOVE will blossom.

Thank you.




PS –  HERE’S where to get my book!

Posted in Character Development | Comments Off on Your Child NEEDS ‘Somebody NEEDS You’


how_to_get_doneIS ‘GOOD ENOUGH’, GOOD ENOUGH?

MY mom always told me, “A job worth doing, is worth doing WELL!”  

So I tried to be perfect!

But when my kids were little, I could never get everything donewell’ at the same time. 
To get the house clean, I’d have to ignore the kids.

When I paid attention to the kids, I would neglect the house.

And when my husband needed attention, everything else stopped.

I became a multi-task juggler and still couldn’t get it all done.

I practiced working faster and faster. My motto became:

“A job worth doing, is worth getting OVER WITH!


I asked myself, “Does EVERYONE go through this?”


When I asked other moms the question, “Do you struggle to get everything DONE?” the answer was always, “YES!”

The realization?

Everyone struggles, and NO ONE DOES IT PERFECTLY!

Got-it-all-done-color-DK-webWHEW! I WASN’T ALONE! But I still worried:


If you are doing the BEST you can DO, that’s ALL YOU CAN DO! 

How can you do MORE than the BEST you can do? If you ARE doing your best, then what more can you expect of yourself?



I like what Peter Marshall said:

“Small deeds DONE are better than great deeds PLANNED” 

Yes, you’ll make mistakes. LEARN and GROW from them.

dustpan-shattered pieces-smSomeone said, “Experience is what you get just after you needed it!”

Older people are revered for their wisdom and experience in almost every culture in the world – Why? Because they’ve made more mistakes than we have! And they are ready to tell you what they learned from it.

I love what John Jolliffe said, “You can’t fault yourself for the wisdom you didn’t have at the time.” 

He also said, “The way you feel about yourself is both your punishment and your reward. YOUR job is to become the kind of person YOU can love.”

SO. . .  LOVE yourself, FORGIVE yourself, pick up the shattered pieces of your life and GO ON!

Remember to be compassionate with your spouse, too. Whatever their faults, there was something wonderful you saw in them from the beginning. They deserve the same chance to grow that you give your children or yourself!


I love this song my husband wrote over 30 years ago, that says it so well! 

Enjoy it here: SHE LOVES ME IN HER OWN WAY, by Jas Hilsdon

Love to you and yours,


By the way, my story, SOMEBODY NEEDS YOU is now a BOOK! You can get it on AMAZON here!  Based on the animated short with voices by June Foray and animated by a girl on the spectrum, the story teaches the value of helpfulness and compassion to those around you.

Make sure to get a copy to help a child you know!



Posted in Character Development | Comments Off on WHEN IS ‘GOOD ENOUGH’, GOOD ENOUGH?


We are so thankful to everyone who helped us win the 2017 Great Non Profit’s Seal! Read what people are saying about our work here.

Thousands of children and their parents benefit by what we do each year.

In addition to our free resources on GoMommyGO®, we donate materials to schools and teachers, including my groundbreaking Art Book, SEE WHAT YOU’RE LOOKING AT

See What You're Looking At! © Ruth Elliott

See What You’re Looking At! © Ruth Elliott

EDU DESIGNS needs your help to bring the arts to children!

You can help by sharing my book with them!

Get a free download of my Art Book for kids by filling out the form below.

I thank you so much for helping. 

I appreciate you!







Ruth Elliott-Hilsdon, Director of EDU DESIGNS; Creator of GoMommyGO®

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Helping your child CLEAN THEIR ROOM!

Thanks to Mindi for suggesting I add a picture of “clean your room”, to GoMommyGO’s free illustrated behavior charts.
The simple command, “Clean Your Room” might be enough for some kids, but not for mine)!
Many get overwhelmed by the sheer enormity of the task and need it broken up into smaller pieces, so they get a chance to learn a method of tackling the job and also feel a sense of accomplishment from each part. This can become part of their regular routine each day.


With my 7 kid’s, their room could quickly become a giant pile of rubble. I thought of the CTT method here, to help them clean the room in 15 minutes. 
Here is how it works:

C– stands for Clothes

T– stands for Toys
T– stands for Trash

C First pick up all CLOTHES you find – quickly – in less than 5 minutes!

T– Then pick up all TOYS (and put in toybox) – in less than 5 minutes!

T– Then pick up all the TRASH left – in less than 5 minutes!


ACT LIKE IT’S A GAME! Let them know that you will assist in directing the process, and TIME them doing it. Since this is a bigger job than mere stickers will reward, Let them know this will be a fun event that will have a bigger reward (like going out for an ice cream cone or a trip to the 99Cent store to pick out a treat for themselves afterwards). If you cannot go out, then perhaps offer a special dessert or treat you know they love as a reward. To get the child started out picking up the clothes:

(#1) YOU START the game, and show them how to toss the first couple of clothes into a pile as fast as possible! Once you’ve shown them, then let THEM do it.

Do the same with the Toys (#2) and Trash(#3).

This is a quick way to get the bulk of the work done and conquer the hardest part. The details will be easier after that!

I heard another GREAT idea invented by a lady whose son was autistic.
She helped him organize his room till it was just the way she liked it, then took a snapshot of the whole thing.
She printed up the photo, had it framed, and put it on the dresser. 
It was used as a model to follow how his room should look the next time he had to clean it!
Her son actually got so detailed in following the photo, that when his little action figure of a scuba diver was shown in the picture with one flipper on and one off, he always made sure he took one off, to match the photo!
I think this is brilliant, and one I wish I had thought of! 
Hope this helps!
Posted in Character Development | Comments Off on Helping your child CLEAN THEIR ROOM!

Suicide Warning Signs

Suicide is the third largest cause of death among teens.

Suicide is the third largest cause of death among teens.

10 Suicide Warning Signs in Young People

“Each day in our nation there are an average of over 5,400 suicide attempts by young people grades 7-12,” according to the American Society for the Positive Care of Children, or American SPCC. This is just one of the many alarming statistics about young people and suicide. Although it can be hard to tell when someone is contemplating suicide, there are signs you may recognize if you know to look for them. Listed below are 10 possible suicide warning signs. It is worth noting that some of these signs are similar to the signs of depression. Depression and suicide are closely tied, so these are very important to be aware of.

Signs to Look Out For

  1. The individual is talking about wanting to hurt or kill themselves. Talk of suicide must always be taken seriously. You may even notice the person writing these thoughts in notes or a journal. If you or someone else are thinking or talking about suicide, call 911 immediately. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline may also be reached at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
  2. The person is expressing hopelessness about the future. When someone expresses hopelessness there is definitely something going on, and this must never be taken lightly.
  3. The individual begins giving away treasured possessions to family or friends. These are items the person would never give away under ordinary circumstances. This may mean that the person wants the belongings to go to loved ones because they have no intention of being around much longer.
  4. There is change in eating habits. The individual may eat little or not at all, or conversely, overeat. When a significant change like this occurs, further investigation is always advised.
  5. The individual is sleeping too much or too little. Often a person contemplating suicide either can’t turn off their brain to sleep, or are so lacking in motivation for life that they sleep all the time.
  6. The person seems to be losing interest in their favorite activities. Often, a person considering suicide will not have the motivation to go to place or partake in things they loved in the past.
  7. The individual begins withdrawing or feeling isolated. People suffering from severe depression with suicidal thoughts will withdraw from everything, mostly relationships and interaction. They choose to be alone rather than participate in any activities or spend time with the people they love most. 
  8. There is an unusual neglect of personal appearance. The individual may stop taking care of their outward appearance due to a complete disregard for personal care. Or there may also be extreme alterations to their “normal” appearance.
  9. The person is experiencing changes in personality. They can go through many extreme emotional and mood changes involving sadness, withdrawal, irritability, anxiety, exhaustion, and indecision. These are classic signs for both depression and suicidal feelings.
  10. The individual may be “acting reckless or engaging in risky activities – seemingly without thinking.” Some of these reckless or risky activities may include reckless driving, drinking, taking drugs, or having unprotected sex. The person may feel that because they intend to die, it doesn’t matter how unsafe their behavior is.

Addiction and Suicidal Thoughts

Drug use and addiction may lead to suicidal thoughts, and vice versa. There are many ways to learn about or seek help for addiction. Whether you’re a member of the African American,  Asian American, Native Hawaiian, or Pacific Islander, Hispanic or Latino, LGBTQ, or another of the many communities out there, there is help for you.

Please remember, if you or someone you know is in imminent danger call 911 immediately. Whether in imminent danger or not, you may also call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255). Take action to help yourself or someone you know.

Steve Johnson has always been dedicated to promoting health and wellness in all aspects of life. Studying in the medical field has shown him how important it is for reputable health-related facts, figures, tips, and other guidance to be readily available to the public. He created with a fellow student to act as a resource for people’s overall health inquiries and as an accurate and extensive source of health information. When he isn’t hard at work in his studies, Steve enjoys playing tennis and listening to his vintage record collection.

(Image via Pixabay by Foundry)

Posted in Character Development | Comments Off on Suicide Warning Signs


“While raising my seven children, creating stories and cartoons was fun for me. Especially since I worked in animation, my dream was always to help children’s character through the arts and media. Retiring after 27 years, I started the non profit Edu Designs to do just that.”~ Ruth Elliott-Hilsdon, Founder of EDU DESIGNS

Inspiring children is what we do. Our volunteers have provided art workshops, free books, videos and assemblies to kids in schools since 2007. We are supported solely by the goodwill donations of people who care. Though we have never gotten paid a salary, the rewards are “out of this world”! 

And our little videos teach BIG lessons that kids ‘get’.

So when the idea for Somebody NEEDS You, came to me, I knew what had to be done: Put together pre-production storyboards, then cast the voices for the show. But who would do the voices? I was thrilled when June Foray was happy to help.


Ruth Elliott-Hilsdon and June Foray

At 95 years of age, June Foray (famous as the voice of Rocky and Natasha from ROCKY and BULLWINKLE) volunteered to perform all 4 voices for my story, SOMEBODY NEEDS YOU! 

Then I searched for volunteers who would help with backgrounds, character design, animation and final production.

I was so excited to get Fine Arts Major Dominique Ovalle to agree to paint backgrounds, and young animation maverick Nicholas Mastrangelo to work on preliminary animation studies in Flash. Here we are at lunch with June:


Ruth, June, Dominique and Nicholas after pre-production of “Somebody NEEDS You!”


Then along came Dani Bowman, a remarkable individual with Autism, who volunteered to add her considerable expertise in Toon Boom animation. Dani has been creating cartoons since the age of 11! She became the major force of operations as she not only did a lions share of animation, but also put everything together in Final Cut. Friend and animation student Zack Miller contributed his talents as well.


Matt Miller’s alter-ego, from his storehouse of creativity!

In addition, Matt Miller, an animator since the age of 10, who earned his BFA in Animation/New Media, added his amazing character designs to the mix!

Along with these artists, Sandra Vielma and Patrick Eidemiller gave generously of their time for the nuts and bolts of production.

toonboomIt’s one thing to get all these talented people to volunteer, it’s another thing entirely to get a major software company like Toonboom to donate their product to the project. But that’s what happened for us!  

What a work of love. When it was ready, we submitted it to the Annie Awards and premiered it at Comic-Con!


Dani Bowman, June Foray & Ruth Elliott-Hilsdon

Before the Annie Awards, Dani and I presented June with a copy of the poster and DVD from the movie showcasing her voiceovers. 

Now YOU can watch what we did and tell us what you think!

Click on the pic to see it on YouTube!

Click on the pic to watch “Somebody NEEDS You” on YouTube!


Scroll to the TOP of the page to see how Dani Bowman and friends created Somebody NEEDS You!  

READ what EDU DESIGNS is doing here. 

We need YOU, too! 
If you believe the arts and media influence children, share your thoughts on what EDU DESIGNS is doing to help kids character on ‘Great Non Profit’s

Your reviews earned us the 2016 badge from Great Non Profit’s!  

To thank you for watching, I have a gift for you:

A free download of my digital Art Book:


Enter your email in the form below and you’ll receive a link to download my ART BOOK for children.  (It’s a $9.99 value, but yours free, as a THANK YOU for helping spread the word about what we are doing to build better character in kids.)
We are excited to share our character-building resources with others. 

Share this link with your friends and family, too!


I appreciate you!

Ruth Elliott-Hilsdon, Director of EDU DESIGNS; Creator of GoMommyGO®

Fill out the form below to get my Art book!


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Posted in Character Development, Child Development, Ethics and Character, family, Psychology | Comments Off on “SOMEBODY NEEDS YOU” needs YOU!

Create Peace and Love ALL YEAR ROUND♩ ♪ ♫ ♬

Want Peace?

Loving the people in our lives can bring more peace to our world.  Maybe not the entire world, but at least to those people our lives touch. I’m so grateful for each and every one of you who has reached out to me..

Love and blessings to YOU!

So much to be thankful for! My wonderful husband, Jas and I were recently busy moving into a new apartment. Now that we’re settled in, we are busy creating musical projects and mentoring students.
♩ ♪ ♫ ♬ ♩ ♪ ♫ ♬ ♩ ♪ ♫ ♬ ♩ ♪ ♫ ♬

Jas created a charming video of his mom, who at 95 years old sang “Santa Claus Is Comin’ To Town”! Click on the pic below to see it!Mom-hilsdon-pic

My friend, Satyam Pal, an 3D Animation student in India created this Christmas message in 3D! I am so proud of him and thankful he allowed me to share it here!  Click below to watch:

Our short animated film, “Somebody Needs You” was recently submitted to the 43rd Annual Annie Awards. Though it was not nominated for an award, we are very proud of it. See it here: 


We LOVE giving to others. And we have never gotten or expected a salary for the work we do. But there are many expenses in creating, printing and distributing materials to those who need and cannot afford them. Our budget is very slim, and we need help too.

Will you please come to our rescue and make a tax-deductible-end-of-the-year donation?

To donate ANY amount, please click the ‘donate’ button below:  

Thank you so much,


Ruth Elliott-Hilsdon 
Director: EDU DESIGNS, a public-benefit nonprofit charity.
Creator: GoMommyGO® the Registered Trademark of EDU DESIGNS

EDU DESIGNS, a Non Profit 501(c)(3) Corporation | 

Fed. Tax ID # 26-1576531 (626) 344-2340  


Posted in Character Development | Comments Off on Create Peace and Love ALL YEAR ROUND♩ ♪ ♫ ♬

The Night Princess in Mandarin

THE NIGHT PRINCESS is an original fable that encourages us to see that the way we treat anyone, is the way we treat everyone!

With tears streaming down his face, RAY BRADBURY declared,
“It’s BEAUTIFUL!”   VAN DYKE PARKS said:I loved your show, too. Terrific animation to a great tale. The music does justice to it all!”

is as gripping as it is mysterious. What do you think happened to The Night Princess? The ending is up to YOU.

Here are questions for discussion with students:

What do YOU think happened?

Was she still alive?

What did the king do?

Did he learn a lesson?

What lesson did he learn?


SOON to be in book form.  

The Night Princess © Ruth Elliott-Hilsdon, 2006

Newly updated to Mandarin in 2015

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To see our animated short, click on the image above!


Sometimes we may want to do something “big and important” in the world, all the while missing opportunities to help those around us.

The story Somebody Needs You is important for kids – to learn to pay attention to their surroundings, and see that they CAN make a difference, wherever they are. 

You can see it HERE.  And it’s getting rave reviews already!  

 “This should be a character education tool in schools across the country!” ~David McKibbin, writer/singer/actor

 “That was amazing. Totally loved it.” ~Charles Halloran, artist and owner of Halloran Comics

When June Foray, (best known for her work on Rocky and Bullwinkle), originally heard the story I wrote to help children, she recorded all 4 voices as a favor to me.  It’s taken a while to finish, but thanks to Dani Bowman and the generous contributions of our talented volunteers, we MADE IT!

Photo on left: Ruth Elliott and June Foray at the Annie Awards, 2013. On right: the famous Temple Grandin and Dani Bowman at a conference of AutismWorksNow, 2015.

Photo on left: Ruth Elliott and June Foray at the Annie Awards, 2013. On right: the famous Temple Grandin and Dani Bowman at a conference of AutismWorksNow, 2015.








Dani Bowman, the director and chief animator of our project, is a high functioning individual with Autism. She founded DaniMation Entertainment, at the remarkable age of 14! After Dani agreed to work personally with me, I knew I had found a partner. She has been the prime mover in bringing this story to life. 

Matt Miller, animator and character designer, generously volunteered his awesome design talent, just after overcoming his battle with cancer this year.  (Read what his adoptive mom wrote about it, here)

boy and baby

A sample of Matt Miller’s work!









Right: Ruth, June Foray, Dominique Ovalle, and Nicholas Mastrangelo.

Others who helped were: Fine artist Dominique Ovalle, on backgrounds, plus Zack Miller and Nicholas Mastrangelo with additional animation. 


ALSO: Special thanks go to Patrick Eidemiller and Sandra Vielma, who were supportive in more ways than I can list. We couldn’t have done it without them. And thanks to Toon Boom Animation for contributing the software.

And thank you to everyone who encouraged us along the way!

Watch it and share the link!

SNY-dog cropped

Ruth Elliott-Hilsdon
Creator, GoMommyGO®

Kids and Parents need all the help they can get.

EDU DESIGNS and GoMommyGO® are there to help, providing materials for parents and teachers who can’t afford them.  We need YOUR help to do that!


Posted in Character Development | Comments Off on Watch “SOMEBODY NEEDS YOU!” – NOW!



Betty with little Matthew a week after he joined the family.

Welcome to our home

We knew we wanted children and made the decision to adopt. When we started the process it was so exciting to think that we would be able to offer them a place in our home . . . to become part of our family!

Both of our children arrived from Central America at 5 ½ months old.

I was always a little sensitive to their health issues, however, since we had no genetic background on either one of them.

About 1 ½ years before our son was to finish college he fell ill. It seemed one thing or another.  I talked to him daily and encouraged him to see the medical staff at college. He continued to plug along so I thought it was just the long nights of studying and not eating properly that contributed to his exhaustion.
Then 3 weeks before he was to finish college he wanted to throw in the towel and just quit and come home. It broke my heart, but I encouraged him to stay since he was so close to being done. We had a long phone conversation and the next day he called me. 

“Mom, I thought about it and I am not a quitter. I’m going to do whatever it takes to finish the last weeks I have left.”

It was a sigh of relief. I talked to him a couple of times a day just to check up on his mental and physical state. He made it to the finish line and came home. I couldn’t be more proud of him.

When he finally arrived home we thought his dream job of becoming an animator was just around the corner. January 2015 we went to the Dr. and he was put on a 6 month prescription for a dermatological condition that had developed. Because of it he had to stay close to the Dr. here and could not really venture out of the area. I told him it was ok, that after the 6 months were over he could continue to find his dream job.

However, in June 2015, he was diagnosed with Testicular Cancer. His words were “Life is not fair to me”. Our hearts melted and we knew that we had to be strong for him.

The first surgery was performed days after the diagnosis and then it was a choice between Chemo Therapy and RPLND surgery. We did discuss this but knew that it was his body, his life and that he had to make the final decision. He elected surgery and we backed him 100%. August 2015 it was performed, and in recovery is now getting stronger every day.  His team of Doctors at the cancer center gave him a good prognosis. With active surveillance he will get blood work every 3 months and a yearly CT scan. 

I am so thankful that after all he has been through his passion for art and animation is stronger today than it has been in a long time. His words now are:  “Mom I have been sick, been told I have cancer, had 2 surgeries, now it’s time to move ahead in life and prove that whoever hires me will be glad they did”.

Here is Matt today, a survivor, pursuing his dream of a career in Animation.

Here is Matt today, a survivor, pursuing his dream of a career in Animation.

I reflect on what I have always told my children since they were little:
“Follow your dream in life – in your dream is your strength”
“Don’t compare yourself to others, you are your own person, stay grounded, stay rooted and always try to always find a positive in everyday”
“Don’t let negative things that happened in the past control how you navigate through your future”

NOTE from Ruth: I am so grateful for the love and support Betty has given her son, physically and emotionally. By encouraging him to follow his dream he will be a blessing to many. He has already blessed others us by generously sharing his talents in our animated short, SOMEBODY NEEDS YOU. See a preview of the film he helped to bring to life here:
SNY-dog cropped

Ruth Elliott-Hilsdon
Creator, GoMommyGO®

Kids and Parents need all the help they can get.

EDU DESIGNS and GoMommyGO® are there to help, providing materials for parents and teachers who can’t afford them.  We need YOUR help to do that!


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