If you just want a book for your family and friends - I'd look in to blurb or lulu. See if you can get one of your illustrator friends to whip something up for dinner and a beer (or 3.) But the way it sounds - you sorta kinda want this to go big and make a ton of money which is a totally different ballgame (which you sound like you are aware of that.)
You might look up Writing With Pictures (Shulevitz) and (tangentially) any of the Scott McCloud books like Understanding Comics. These books discuss writing along with illustration - they aren't just about the images. I'm sure there are other books out there as well that discuss children's book writing and illustration these are just the ones I know about and have read personally.
There are some complex ideas behind crafting such concise information inside a children's book. I've always heard it's easy to write a novel, a little bit harder to write a short story and a little harder still to write a poem.
You might be able to find some niche and turn a ho-hum book into something more. An example is this book my wife found that we are going to get my daughter for some holiday or something. It's on etsy but I can't find it right now - forgot the name (not a good sign?!?) But I do remember the "hook" - it's about a girl who has a toy bear or doll or something that has a jacket that's been knitted or crocheted and the book comes with patterns to make the jacket for the child and the child's doll. It's a Waldorf inspired book. My wife knits/crochets and she's all in to the Waldorf education stuff so now she wants the book. This lady has like 4 or so books on etsy so who knows - my wife may want them all - whether they have a worthwhile story or not.