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I don’t know why holiday stress is worse than regular day stress, but it does seem to be, doesn’t it? Maybe it’s the combination of trying to live up to tradition and making everything perfect and feeling the new year coming on and wanting everything to be better or different than it was last year.
Whatever the reason I feel like we could all use some easy ways to destress. Things that don’t involve running away from our families.
I have a friend who has started doing puzzles, and I know a lot of people get a puzzle for Christmas, which gives you an activity you can do with your family that doesn’t actually require a lot of interaction. (The girl is getting a few puzzles this year, because she asked for them, but they’re great for adults, too.)
Coloring books for adults are another simple way to lower stress levels and to provide an activity that everyone can do and have fun with while not requiring a lot of conversation, space or setup time.
Setting Up a Coloring Book Station
Actually, it’s a great idea to have a coloring station set up for the holidays if you’re having a crowd. All you need is:
- coloring books or pages for adults and kids
- coloring supplies like colored pencils, crayons and markers
- pencil and/or crayon sharpeners
- clipboards or hard surfaces for people to color on (optional if you have this set up on a table)
- cups to hold pencils or crayons (also optional if you want to let people take their coloring elsewhere)
Gather all this stuff into a basket or box and leave it on the table for people to find. Coloring is a great quiet activity for after a big meal, or it gives people something to do and to talk about while the meal is being prepared.
Giving the Gift of Coloring
You can also prepare a quick gift of adult coloring books and supplies without much effort. Grown up coloring books are everywhere right now, covering everything from mandalas to flowers, animals to Harry Potter.
Both books include basic line drawings and repeating patterns. The Botanical Wonders one is mostly flowers and leaves, while the Natural Wonders one includes some animals. I would say this one is a little more detailed, but they’re both nice.
The paper is nice and thick if you like to use markers, and pages are printed on only one side so you don’t have to worry about markers that bleed or pressing too hard and messing up the look of the other side.
These pages are also perforated so you can easily pull out the one you want to work on and leave the rest for others to peruse.
Leisure Arts has a nice variety of nature-inspired coloring books for adults, which are great entry-level books to try if you’re not sure you’re going to like coloring, or if you have kids around who will take the “grown up” coloring books and make them their own.
Choose a couple of books and some nice colored pencils or other coloring supplies, and you’ve got a fun gift for anyone on your list.
Have you gotten into coloring yet? I’d love to hear about your favorite books or kinds of pages to color.