yesterday i mentioned our Jesse Tree coloring, but really, coloring together is one of the highlights of all our feast day celebrations. coloring opens up time, slows it down, creates a space for reflection. everyone, even the youngest child, can be involved, and there is very little frustration with how things turn out. coloring together creates a container for our experience. it gives busy hands something to do as i read an extended passage. it quiets the body, so that the mind is free to contemplate.
can children contemplate? i think if we give them the tools–time without rush, handwork, a worthy subject for their devotion and our good example–they will gravitate toward the practice. the shared moments of devotion cannot be matched.
sharing the church year with my children has given me the opportunity to grow. somehow when we are coloring together, the push and tug of life and everything that needs doing, doesn’t affect me so much. i, too, am able to quiet myself and let the one thing necessary come into focus.
here are some of our favorite places to get coloring sheets:
- Charlotte from Waltzing Matilda has created a lovely collection of hand drawn pictures for saint days. her family also knows how to celebrate, so do look around her place for inspiration!
- Veronica at Paper Dali has both free resources and a few collections for sale. we bought the 25 Days in December set last year. it has Jesse Tree ornaments and Saint Day pages, but the highlight for me was a drawing of Joaquin and a very pregnant Anne, thinking about little baby Mary! at the bottom of her sidebar there are links to “Creative Catholic Mamas,” again a good place to look for ideas. and here’s a link to the Virgin that we’re coloring in the picture!
- the saint card printables from Nippert & Co Artworks can be printed in color to create saint cards or resized and printed in black and white to create a coloring sheet. they generously offer all their products at half off for homeschoolers! we have the Faith Keepers set (scroll almost to the bottom of the page).
- we also use the lovely clip art created by Gertrud Mueller Nelson to make coloring sheets. the evocative thick black lines create chunky spaces for adding color. there are over 700 images including scenes from the gospel readings–an excellent way to use the lectionary to prepare for church.