Walking onto the beach the first day of vacation, I sneezed. I don’t remember if my husband said God Bless you, but I do remember that he looked at my son and said,
“Mommy’s allergic to vacation – there are no lists.”
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I cracked up. You know how when jokes are based on truth, they really are funny? Once in awhile, my husband tells a joke that’s not super corny and cracks me up 😉
But here I am, back from vacation and I have already written one list and thought about three others I need to make.
My life is driven by lists. They help me focus. They make me feel productive. They remind me of my responsiblilties.
And now we even have a picture schedule for my son. A list that my son can read so he can point out what we didn’t do or need to do – which he does -often.
I love that he keeps me on task. But ya know what, I need down time.
“Back in the day”, some moms would watch soap operas. I have no desire to watch a soap opera. BUT, maybe the down time is something that must be scheduled . . .since Mommy never really “punches out of work”.
It’s okay for Mommy to color because:
1. It’s Meditative
Taking care of our health is so important! As mothers, we need to do so much preventative care, because we do so much for our families! Meditation has been shown to lower stress and blood pressure and boost your immune system! Meditation can also help manage chronic pain and even help with infertility and breast feeding. And for those mommas who are taking a class or pursuing a degree; studies have shown that students who meditate earn higher grades than students who do not meditate. When we meditate, either by saying the Rosary; repeating a short mantra, like saying the name of Jesus; or by coloring – we clear our minds of all the noise. We stop thinking about our lists and everything that’s on them – and what we need to add! That clearing of the mind is so beneficial to our whole self! It’s a healthy exercise!
2. It shows children that relaxing does not need to be in front of a screen
So many times I catch myself taking a “time-out” in front of my computer and looking at my phone. It’s more times than I’d like to admit. My son sees everything and is learning by my example. Being aware of that, I would really like him to see that down time does not have to be equivalent to screen time.
3. It can be done with your children.
Whether you start out with your child, or your child decides he or she wants to join you, coloring can provide an opportunity to talk to each other, compliment him or her and spend some quality time together. In my case, it’s also practice in exercising patience, because inevitably a little one draws over my “masterpiece”.
4. It can be done WITHOUT your children.
Coloring alone can be so relaxing! I love that I can do it with a cup of coffee – or a glass of wine. Sometimes I include it in my prayer journaling (8 Ways to Pray Using a Journal). Other times I find it is a great way to spend time with friends and combine faith and fellowship (How to Host a ‘Sip and Script’ Party: Prayer Journaling with Friends). And still other times, I just want to enjoy it – just because it is fun.
5. There is a feeling of being productive when you are finished.
In fact, you may even want to hang it up somewhere and add to your home or office decor! The new coloring book, Color Happy features removable 8 x 10 and 5 x 7 designs, printed on thick paper and perfect for framing. Even if you choose not to frame it, it’s so great looking at something that you made, admiring it’s beauty and being a little proud of your work!
6. It’s cheap!
Seriously, the biggest expense are your pencils – but they will make you so giddy, it’s totally worth it! Prismacolor Colored Pencils are AMAZING! I sat down with my sister-in-law (who is an artist) on vacation to color. I was so excited she brought coloring stuff with her too. I pulled out my Crayola, and she had the Prismacolor Pencils. She has me sold on them – easily! They feel like butter going on the paper, and I felt like I had to sharpen my Crayola’s so often – I think I saw her sharpen a pencil once. There are lots of trends to go out and paint while you sip wine, but coloring is definitely more affordable!
7. It Makes Mommy Feel Young!
There is such a feeling of nostalgia when you get a chance to color! I don’t know about you, but it just makes me happy! Something simple that brings such joy is so awesome. I love when I see my son enjoying a simple toy or game – it’s nice to get back to that place where something simple can bring about happiness.
Do you color? Do you find it an opportunity to pray or relax? What reasons would you add to the list?