CNN — Explaining the pandemic to kids isn't easy. So one mom set out to help.
Stefanie Trilling, a mother of two who lives near four New York hospitals, is hoping to make the pandemic a little less intimidating for kids by recreating the covers of classic children's books
The reimagined theme, of course, is the coronavirus. But her work couldn't be more delightful.
Instead of "Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs," Trilling adapted the title, "Cloudy With a Chance of Panic Hoarding."
"The Lonely Prince," "The Magic School Bus Explores COVID Testing" and "Green Eggs and Wash Your Hands" are a few other reworked titles.
The book covers first began as a way for Trilling to distract her 5-year-old daughter and 2-year-old son from the depressing nature of the pandemic. New York has seen the most coronavirus-related deaths in the US. She said early on in the pandemic, they would hear sirens blaring throughout the day.
"It was really distressing to me and my kids," the 37-year-old mother told CNN. "My daughter would ask if the people in the ambulances had the coronavirus and whether they would be okay."
The family started painting to keep their minds away from the anxiety-inducing noise.
Trilling painted some characters from the "Elephant & Piggie" book series, but after her daughter started asking questions about the virus, she began to paint the coronavirus spike proteins.
"It opened up the path to start talking about (the coronavirus) and it allayed some of her fears," Trilling said. "She liked it and I posted it on Instagram."
Her friends on Instagram loved it so she started painting more, such as "Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad 2020" and "How the Virus Stole Easter."
Trilling has since racked up thousands of followers on Instagram and hundreds of likes on her book covers.
"It went viral, no pun intended," she said.
While the book covers unfortunately don't come with the rest of the story ("Goodnight Zoom" would be a great bedtime read), Trilling said that she's working on getting her illustrations printed so she can sell them and give all the proceeds to charity.
But for now, she will keep posting new book covers on Instagram.
"I really hope they allow parents to communicate better with their children and show their children that we're all in this together," Trilling said.
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