The Mindfulness Colouring Book: Anti-Stress Art Therapy for Busy People – Emma Farrarons
A short while ago I was visiting my mother and she excitedly told me about a new trend that had emerged, namely adult colouring books. With two toddlers in the house most of my days involved colouring in some craft or cartoon character and so I must admit that the thought of more colouring in didn’t sound hugely appealing to me and so I promptly forgot about it.
Fast forward a few weeks and these adult colouring books seemed to be popping up all over the place and so I decided to do some research and give it a try.
The theory behind it is that it is a form of active meditation and that by focusing our attention on simple repetitive tasks, even for short periods of time, we can remarkably improve our mental wellbeing. We become able to deal with stress (read temper tantrums and fussy eaters) better, improve work performance (perhaps shout less) and sleep better (when our little ones aren’t waking us up for some or other reason).
Well all of this sounded like a sure fire winner and certainly more obtainable than trying to sneak off for a few minutes of the old fashioned meditation and so I went in search of one of these colouring books. There were a few choices at the book shop and I settled on The Mindfulness Colouring Book by Emma Farrarons. All of the available books were beautifully illustrated however what swayed me in favour of this book was its size. At a little smaller than A5 it was far easier to fit into my handbag (perhaps to kill a few moments waiting for my daughter to finish school) or stash away in my bedside drawer (away from little hands).
The book has a nice selection of illustrations ranging from pretty teacups, flowers and foxes to swirly patterns, mushrooms and a giant sleeping cat. There is certainly an illustration to suit every mood. I didn’t want to wait for a quiet alone moment to try out my new book and so I asked my daughter to select a picture for me (she chose the teacups). The three of us sat down, them with their cartoon and me with my teacups and while it was difficult to completely zone out with my children hovering over the book making sure I wasn’t colouring out the lines or choosing the wrong colour, it was a very nice change to be colouring in something a little more adult. At the end of the activity (as decided by the children) I felt quite satisfied with the result and was looking forward to continuing with my endeavours.
That evening once the children had gone off to bed I decided to sit down and colour in instead of watching tv and I was surprised at how quickly the time passed and how much I enjoyed it. In the space of a movie I had coloured in a full double page. I did sleep quite well that night and although it is difficult to tell if that was a result of the colouring in or pure exhaustion or a even combination of the two, I think I will definitely keep up with the colouring in.
My attempts so far.
I found my copy of The Mindfulness Colouring Book at The Readers Warehouse however they are also available at other leading book stores.
Paperback: 112 pages
Publisher: Boxtree Ltd; Main Market Ed. edition (January 1, 2015)
Image courtesy of Amazon.com
Fancy Nancy – Jane O’Connor
If you have a daughter at pre-school then you have probably encountered Fancy Nancy who’s over the top attempts to make EVERYTHING fancy are captured in this delightful series of books. In the original story she manages to transform her parents and little sister for a fancy night out on the town and although the evening doesn’t turn out quite the way she expected, it does have a very heart warming ending. From its glittery cover to its colourful illustrations this book will quickly become a favourite for many little girls and although I may be sick of reading it myself, I do love how it sparks my girls’ imaginations and encourages them to play dress up too.
Age Range: 4 – 8 years
Hardcover: 32 pages
Publisher: HarperCollins (December 13, 2005)
Image courtesy Fancy Nancy World