Change is something that we will all experience in our lives. It can
be very difﬁcult, especially for children, to adjust to change. Children often
feel unsure, insecure, and anxious when presented with even the smallest
change. We wrote this story to teach children about the value of
friendship, the importance of helping others, and how change can be a
Kelly Johns &
S quirt lived in a small, but cozy tomato can behind the Ooey
Gooey Pizza Shoppe in Sunshine City. One morning, while Squirt was
in a deep sleep dreaming about the gigantic hot fudge sundae he
had eaten the night before, the pizza cook came out of the restaurant
and started sweeping the sidewalk.
Squirt woke up and jumped out of bed. He yawned and stretched
and walked to his front door to see what the cook was doing. To his
surprise, the broom swept up his house and dumped it into a garbage
“Stop! This is my house!” Squirt shouted as the cook put the lid
on top of the garbage can.
Frightened, he jumped back into bed and hid under the blanket.
Suddenly, there was the roar of an engine and the rumble of big
tires rolling down the alley. A garbage truck screeched to a stop
behind the restaurant. A strong man jumped out of the truck and
picked up the garbage can. He removed the lid from the can and
dumped its contents, including Squirt and his house, into the back
of the truck.
Squirt looked through the window of his house from the back
of the truck as they drove for miles. The tall buildings of the city
became smaller the further they drove into the country. The truck
drove so far away from the city that the tall buildings seemed as
though they were small enough to fit into his pocket. Just when
Squirt thought that the ride would never end, the truck turned off
the country road and into Junkyard Junction.
The garbage truck came to a stop. Squirt held on tight while
the garbage truck rumbled and grumbled. The back of the truck
tilted upward and slowly dumped Squirt and his house onto
the ground. Squirt carefully came out of his home to see where
he was. The garbage truck drove away, leaving him alone in an
“What am I going to do?”
Squirt wandered around Junkyard Junction looking for
someone who could help him. After walking for what seemed
like hours, he came upon a white picket fence covered with
beautiful roses. He leaned over to smell one of the blossoms.
The roses’ sweet per fume tickled his nose and made him sneeze
so hard that it knocked him off his feet. When he stood up, he
was surprised to see that his sneeze had blown away some of
the flowers to reveal a secret door.
Squirt knocked on the door, but there was no answer. He
knocked again, only this time much harder. The sliding window on
the door slowly opened and a set of eyes appeared.
“Password please?” asked the unseen voice.
“I’m sorry, that is not the password,” replied the voice. “Would
you like to try again?”
“I don’t know the password.”
“Wrong again,” the voice chuckled. “I’ll give you one last guess.”
“I just need some help.”
“Sorry, that’s not the password either.”
The sliding window slammed shut.
“Wait!” Squirt shouted. “I don’t know the password because I’m
lost, but I really do need your help!”
There was a moment of silence before the sliding window
opened again. Squirt looked up at the set of eyes and asked,
“What’s your name?”
“Have you ever been lost?” asked Squirt.
“Yes,” Hugo responded. “It was scary.”
Squirt began to sob, “Yes it is, and I am very scared.”
Hugo felt sorry for the little stranger on the other side of the
door. “Please don’t cry. I will let you in.”
Squirt heard the lock turn, and the door opened slowly. Hugo
stood in the doorway wearing blue overalls and an orange tie. He
had friendly eyes and green fur. Squirt thought that he looked a
little bit like a farmer.
Hugo smiled. “Welcome to Junkyard Junction!”
Squir t breathed a big sigh of relief and walked through
the door way. As Hugo led Squir t through Junk yard Junc tion,
Squir t explained how he ended up in this strange place.
Hugo listened carefully to Squir t ’s stor y and commented,
“ That sounds exciting.”
“I t was quite an adventure, ” Squir t agreed.
“But what are you going to do now? Your house is on the
other side of the fence where the mean old cat lives. You
need to move it to a safe place.”
“Do you have any friends that could help?”
“I have a lot of friends!” said Hugo. “Let ’s go find them.”
First they went to find Bug and Sally Star. Sally lived in a big
and beautiful doll house and Bug lived in the dog house in Sally’s
“Sally is a movie star,” Hugo explained, “and Bug is her biggest
Bug was taking pictures of Sally when Squirt and Hugo
“Good morning. I would like to introduce you to my new friend
Squirt,” said Hugo.
Sally struck another pose for the camera. “Did you come to get
my autograph?” she asked.
“Not exactly, we’ve come to see if you could help us move my
house to a safe place.”
“ That sounds like fun, but movie stars don’t know anything
about moving houses silly,” laughed Sally. “We should go to
Betty and Belinda Booger’s house and ask them what to do. They
Squirt, Sally, and Hugo jumped into Sally’s remote-control
sports car. Bug picked up the remote control and started the
“Do you have your seatbelt on Miss Star?” asked Bug.
“Of course, let’s go!”
The car zoomed off. Bug ran as fast as he could behind the
car, using the remote control to steer the car as they made their
way to the home of Betty and Belinda Booger.
“SHHH, the sisters are sleeping,” whispered Cosmo the Coo-
“Would you please wake them up?” Hugo asked politely. “It’s
“I’ll try, but you know that they do not like to be bothered
when they are sleeping.”
Cosmo took a deep breath of air, flapped his wings, and
shouted “Coo Coo! Hey sleeping beauties! Wake up already!”
The group of new friends could hear some strange noises
coming from within the Coo-Coo clock. There was a thug, then a
thump, and finally an “Ouch! That hurt!”
“It sounds like somebody fell out of their bed,” Sally
The groggy and sleepy-eyed Booger sisters came to the door.
It was obvious to the visitors that the ladies were not the least bit
happy to be awake.
“This better be important,” complained Betty.
Belinda struggled to stay awake. “I was having such a nice
“We’re sorry that we woke you,” Squirt apologized. “I need help
moving my house.”
“Ask Stanley the handyman for help,” suggested Betty.
“That’s a great idea!” Hugo exclaimed. “Why didn’t we think of
Belinda yawned and stretched. “Maybe you didn’t get enough
Betty and Belinda returned to the clock to finish their naps and
the group of new friends hurried to Stanley’s Service Station.
Stanley was busy mounting a propeller onto a toy airplane when
Bang! Bang! Bang!
The noise from the hammer was so loud that the handyman
didn’t hear the group approach him from behind.
“Hello Stanley,” said Hugo.
But Stanley didn’t respond.
“Stanley!” Hugo called again, only a little bit louder this time.
Bang! Bang! Bang!
“Stanley!” they all shouted together as loudly as they could.
Startled by the sudden noise, Stanley dropped the hammer onto
“Melted ice cream that hurt!” Stanley cried out as he hopped
around holding his sore toes.
“I’m sorry that we startled you,” Squirt apologized.
“That’s okay. Welcome to Stanley’s Service Station, where you
will always get service with a smile. How may I help you today?”
“Would you please help us move my house?”
“Moving huh? I have an idea. Give me a hand with this
The group helped Stanley carry the propeller back to Squirt’s
house, which was still sitting where it had fallen when dumped
from the garbage truck. Working together, they attached the
propeller to the top of the tomato-can house. Squirt thought
the contraption resembled something he had seen in Sunshine
“It’s just like a helicopter!” he shouted.
Sally Star could barely hold back her excitement, “I’ve never
flown before,” she confessed.
Everyone climbed aboard.
Stanley sat closest to the propeller because he was going to
be the pilot. “ Time for take off. Hold on tight everyone!”
Stanley started twirling the propeller, and the house slowly
started to lift off the ground. It climbed higher and higher until they
were high above Junkyard Junction. They flew over the old oak tree,
and then across the rose-covered fence.
“I can see my house!” cried Hugo.
“Me too!” said Sally. “And there’s Betty and Belinda’s clock. There’s
Stanley’s Service Station!”
Bug, who was busy taking pictures with his camera said, “I can
see all of Junkyard Junction from up here!”
Suddenly, without warning, the propeller started to make
some noise. First there was a clink, and then there was a clank.
The propeller stopped twirling and for a brief second, the house
was suspended in mid-air.
“What’s wrong?” asked Squirt, trying not to sound too
Stanley, who was so frightened that his knees were shaking,
covered his eyes with his hands, “Get ready for a crash landing!”
The friends held on tight to the tomato-can house as it
twisted and turned wildly, falling faster and faster toward the
The house smashed into a black berr y bush. The
passengers were tossed from the house and into the bush’s
branches. The group, thankful that nobody was hur t, quick ly
climbed from the bush and onto the ground.
“ That was fun! Let ’s do it again!” shouted Stanley.
Hugo, feeling light-headed and dizz y, said, “No thank you. I
would prefer to stay on the ground.”
“Look!” yelled Squir t. “Now my house is like a tree house!”
“ That ’s so cool!” exclaimed Sally.
Squirt was happy his home was now in a safe place. He was even
happier to have made so many new friends in a wonderful place called