Color Me Calm

Have you jumped on the colouring bandwagon yet?

It seems like everywhere I look, new books are popping up and people are getting into mindful colouring. There are even colouring parties (just add wine!)

There are so many different themes and styles of colouring books to choose from now... but what if you're not really sure what kind of book you're into? Or you're looking for a relaxing activity but colouring kinda stresses you out? (I hear that one more often than you would think!)

If either of those sound like you (or if you're just looking for a bumper book of designs), you might like "Color Me Calm".

Written by Lacy Mucklow and illustrated by Angela Porter, "Color Me Calm" features 100 pages designed for the adult colouring enthusiast as well as a little insight into why colouring is relaxing, how to use the book as part of your mindfulness routine and even which colours are calm! It's like a guided journey into the adult colouring experience.

The book is divided into thematic sections ranging from mandalas and geometric patterns to water imagery and nature scenes. It's really nice to have such a wide array of designs in one book.

The single-sided pages ensure that colouring with your favourite markers is possible. Yay! While the detailed designs and variety of styles make sure that you don't get bored.

I will admit that some of the pages are a little juvenile for my taste (and there are a handful of designs which are puzzlingly fuzzy) but in a book of 100 designs, I don't expect to love everything and the author doesn't expect you to either. The wide array of styles was designed to help you pick and choose what kind of subject matter you find calming to colour.

While I don't love the more scenic pictures, I do love the patterns and mandalas. With a picture, I find having to select the right colour for each element can feel a little stressful - there's more a sense of doing it right / wrong when colouring a picture.

On the other hand, with mandalas, you pick a colour for one element and then repeat that choice around the circle. That repetition combined with the circular movement is really calming.

I'm pretty pleased that "Color Me Calm" helped me narrow down my colouring preferences - mandalas all the way! (And I know just what do do with my finished pages!)

Color Me Calm is published by Race Point Publishing. You can find it at (and the other titles in the Color Me series) at major booksellers like Amazon. This book was provided to me by the publisher but all images and opinions are my own.

Do you have a favourite colouring book?
What kind of designs do you find the most relaxing?

Summer Doodles

A handful of my favourite doodles from July. I'm a little behind! 

I'm not going to lie... between packing and moving and book writing and traveling and life... I kinda failed my daily doodle challenge this summer.

On top of which, my phone took an icy dip and while it mostly works, the camera mostly doesn't. Clearly, without daily instagram posting to keep me in line, my motivation to doodle took a dive.

All of that to say... I had good intentions for a creative summer... but bad follow through.

But I'm gritting my teeth and arming myself with markers and paints and soldiering on... even if that loss in motivation also means a big dip in my love for the results.

I'll keep trying to get back into a routine (returning to blogging and business this week should hopefully help) and keep looking for a way to respark that doodle joy.

How did your creative pursuits fare over the summer? Did you make time to make? Or did you take time off to just enjoy those long summer days that are over too soon?

Slowing Down For Summer

Hello again!

Here we are on the other side of summer (well, yes, technically, there are still a couple more weeks... but there's something about Labour Day and that first day of school that feel far more final than a number circled on a calendar).

How was your summer?
Did you soak up all that hot weather goodness?
Eat armloads of peaches and melon and tomatoes, dip in the lake, roast marshmallows over a friendly fire, leisurely read a good book (or one of those oh-so-good-because they're oh-so-bad ones) under a tree?

Over here we've been soaking up the sweetest slowest summer on record. Well, after being busy as... you know whats.

After moving at the end of July (big thanks to whoever scheduled that delightful heatwave to hit just as we were packing!), I spent much of August finishing up two book projects. But we'll talk more about those at another time! Then we hit the road for a leisurely road trip around Ontario... during which I took not a single picture - can you believe it? But we wound our way (or should I say, ate our way) through Prince Edward County to Kingston to Ottawa through Algonquin Park and Muskoka and back. Ontario is full of some mighty fine trees and lakes and sunsets (and chip trucks) you guys!

But in between it all, we've been spending plenty of time hanging out in the garden with the flowers, the birds and the bees...

And the chipmunks! They're my favourite!

It's been a summer of finding quiet moments. Pausing to take it all in. The sound of wings fluttering past. How the spider spins his web, the chipmunk dives head first into his hole, the blue jay squawks if you haven't provided him with the perfect peanut and the bumblebee collects pollen with unbridled enthusiasm.

And, of course, daily admiration of the morning glories who climb all over each other (and whatever else might get in their way) in an unofficial contest to see who blooms the brightest each morning. They all do.

This summer has been equal parts chilly and downright tropical. But temperature ups and downs are no match for zucchini-filled summer baking to warm up and tromping through icy streams to cool down.

I'll be sad to see Summer and all her bright colours and heat-heavy slow days go, but, at the same time, we're excited for the crisp breezes, cozy smells and fresh beginnings of Fall.

How about you? How was your summer?