“Here’s Some Happy” by Graham

Here's Some Happy Coloring Journal Book Review

Here’s Some Happy!

What are you in the mood for? Coloring? Journaling? Meditating on Scripture? All of the above? Well, guess what?! I found a beautiful, sturdy coloring journal that’s filled with frilly drawings, inspiring verses, and lots of lined space for journaling. ?

Here's Some Happy Coloring Journal Book Review
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It Passed the Test!

I gave this book my standard test using a variety of media, and it passed with flying colors (no pun intended). The ink did not bleed through—which is super important when you consider that one side of every page is lined for your writing pleasure. 

Here's Some Happy Coloring Journal Book Review
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This 128-page, 10×10-inch, hard-cover book is perfect-bound with a soft, colorful cover that opens flat and stays open while you color and/or journal. Yasss!!! 

Here's Some Happy Coloring Journal Book Review
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The pages are thick and slightly textured (you can see some of the texture in the orange block, bottom right); the pictures are beautiful, light-hearted, and fun!

Add Textures and Patterns

There is plenty of white space within the drawings where you can add your own patterns and textures—you can customize it to your own tastes. They really thought of everything when they pulled the Here’s Some Happy coloring journal together. 

If you click the picture below, you can see the texture I added to the gray loops on the umbrella (with a silver gel pen). 

Here's Some Happy Coloring Journal Book Review
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Here’s Some Happy: A Coloring Journal to Lift the Soul by Gina Graham would make a wonderful addition to your own collection, and I also think it would make a great gift for the thoughtful creatives in your life. 


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

“A Giving Heart Coloring Book”

A Giving Heart Coloring Book

When they first arrived, I thought, “Oh, no! How can I review THREE coloring books? What could I possibly say about one that I would not say about the other? Brilliant plan, Laura! NOT!!!” However, I have to say that these books are so different, it really hasn’t been much of a challenge at all! Update: After using this book for a while, I can tell you that it’s definitely my favorite of the three I’ve reviewed from Faith Words Press. 

A Giving Heart: A Coloring book Celebrating Motherhood by Stephanie Corfee was designed especially with mothers in mind.

The illustrations are feminine, frilly, and faith-based.

They are primarily one-sided, but if there are words, then the words are printed on the other side (not sure why, but it’s pretty).

The pages are sturdy and held up pretty well to to the media I used; however, I did have some issues with erasing. (If you must erase, be gentle.)

Coloring Pictures Is Therapeutic

I filled-in the picture below with a nice set of colored pencils, glitter gel pens, and chalk (for the sky). I experienced a little bleedthrough, but fortunately I had slipped in a piece of cardstock between the page I was coloring and the next page, so it didn’t affect the next illustration. I’m really pleased with how it turned out!

A Giving Heart Coloring Book
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A Giving Heart Coloring Book
Click to enlarge so you can see the sparkle

In the photo on the right, you can see the sparkle from the glitter pens.

For what it’s worth, the way I achieved the gradient effect on the flower petals was by coloring them solid. Then, I used an eraser to pull some of the color back off.

These two photos (above and to the right) look different because of the lighting in my house and where I took the photos.

On the reverse side of the image I completed, you can see where I layered various colors. I don’t think it’s a big deal to have the embossing, since I’m not showcasing the back of the picture!

A Giving Heart Coloring Book
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Had I not inserted a sheet of cardstock under the page I was coloring, the next image would definitely have been debossed and possibly smudged. (Be sure to keep that in mind if you tend to blend colors or press hard or use water-based markers.) 

I mounted the following picture on a 12″ x 12″ piece of textured scrapbook cardstock, framed it, and gave it to a friend who has the spiritual gift of wisdom (and shares her wisdom with me)! She loved it, and I loved coloring it for her. 

A Giving Heart Coloring Book
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UPDATE:
I really love this coloring book and have colored a few more pictures since my original review (see above and below). Here I’ve included a few snapshots of a work in progress so you can see my process. I begin with a variety of colored pencils (layering colors and erasing edges to achieve tonal variation and gradient effects); then, I move on to glitter gel pens (allowing time for them to dry & being very careful not to smudge); and  finish up with chalk. ? Click to enlarge the photos below.

These gorgeous pictures are fit to be framed and hung as art! 


I created a video of a few of the pages so you can see how lovely they are.

Specs:

  • Measures approximately 10″ x 10″ 
  • 46 intricate drawings 

Pros:

The pictures in this book are VERY pretty, and in my opinion, frame-worthy. Illustrations include: floral patterns, angel, coffee, a country drive, cactus, tea, Bible verses, quotes about motherhood, and love. 

Cons:

The pages could be a little thicker and more smooth. Be sure to insert cardstock between the page you color and the next page. 

A Giving Heart Coloring Book

I recommend A Giving Heart: A Coloring book Celebrating Motherhood by Stephanie Corfee to women, teens, and pre-teen girls. The drawings are a bit too intricate for little ones (in my opinion). This would make a great gift for a new mother or new grandmother! 


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

“Joyful Inspirations Coloring Book”

Joyful Inspirations Coloring Book

When I pick up a coloring book containing beautiful, yet intricately detailed drawings, I can feel my stress level immediately begin to rise at the thought of coloring just ONE of the pictures, not to mention the thought of coloring the entire book. Exactly how much free time do they think I have on my hands?!  

Let’s just say that those books magically appear back on the shelf where I found them, and I continue my search while practicing deep-breathing exercises to calm back down.

Robin Mead’s Joyful Inspirations Coloring Book: With Illustrated Scripture and Quotes to Cheer Your Soul is exactly the type of coloring book I enjoy! ?️

The pictures are unique and fun, with just enough detail to promote relaxation without killing the mood, and she leaves plenty of space within the designs for you to add your own creative touches to the page.

When I colored the picture below, you can see that I was able to creatively customize the children’s clothing—drawing in sleeves (second from left) and patterns (the first three left to right).

Joyful Inspirations Coloring Book
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I used colored pencils, glitter gel pens, and chalk for the rays of the sun and to help with skin tones. I find that chalking helps me get exactly the tones I’m looking for without overpowering the image. 

Unique and Diverse

Most of Mead’s drawings do not include people, but those that do lend themselves to ethnic diversity, which reflects the heart and calling of the author:

Joyful InspirationsRobin Mead is an artist who combines her background in social work, studies in fine art, and love of expression to create joyful depictions of life. Using insight and intuition, she translates positive emotions onto paper, canvas, and the digital screen.” (author bio)

The illustrations vary widely from flowers to leaves; skylines to underwater scenes; butterflies to dolphins; peacocks to owls; and landscapes to floral patterns and kaleidoscopic images. The book also features drawings of a number of diverse places of worship ranging from cathedrals to country churches.

Joyful Inspirations Coloring Book
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Specs:

  • 96 pages with images printed on both sides of the page.
  • 10″ x 10″ (approximately)

Pros:

The pictures are unique and interesting; detailed and diverse. Some pages feature Bible verses and inspirational quotes, but most are wordless.

Cons:

Joyful Inspirations Coloring Book
🔎Click to enlarge & view the transfer problem. These are four pages which were affected.

Because the pictures are printed on both sides of the page, you might experience some bleed-through—especially if you use water-based ink. I used gel pens with no adverse effects.

Sadly, I need to let you know that after I finished coloring my picture, I realized the following six pages had shared ink with each other (see picture at right). ?

Although the transferred ink was easy to erase, I recommend placing a sheet or two of cardstock under the page you are coloring to help minimize the offset. (You also might wish to invest in a good eraser.)

Book Cover
Joyful Recommendation with Caveat

I highly recommend Joyful Inspirations Coloring Book with the important reminder that you need to color with caution: (1) place cardstock under the picture you’re working on, and (2) don’t use water-based markers if you plan to color the illustration on the back of the picture you’re working on. This is unique coloring book will be enjoyable for all ages, and would make a great gift!


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission…which would be really nice! Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

The Parables of Jesus Coloring/Devotional

Parables of Jesus Coloring Book Devotional

The Parables of Jesus a Coloring Book Devotional by Laura James and Katara Washington Patton is like two books in one! Not only do you get a coloring book filled with beautifully-drawn illustrations of imagined scenes in Jesus’ parables, but you also get thought-provoking devotionals based on the corresponding Scripture passage.

Both the author and illustrator are African American women who love Jesus and have expressed their personal journeys of faith on these pages. The illustrations were created with people of color in mind across all ethnicities, which is helpful, since so many coloring books reflect the Anglo-Saxon or European culture. The characters in each parable were purposefully depicted in such a way that anyone, regardless of nationality, could color them and reflect their own (or the Jewish) cultural heritage.

I love this coloring book devotional!

The layout is set-up so that you read the devotional first, and then as you color the detailed pictures, you reflect on the scripture passage that you read and the author’s insights. You can also use this time to practice a little introspection and self-examination in response to the parable.

The Parables of Jesus Coloring Book Devotional
Click to enlarge this illustration from the first devotional in the book (colored by yours truly)

For example, the book opens with a devotional entitled “Out with the Old, in with the New” based on Mark 2:21 which says,

Besides, who would patch old clothing with new cloth? For the new patch would shrink and rip away from the old cloth, leaving an even bigger tear than before.” (NLT)*

The author insightfully explains the parable, and concludes the devotion with a few thought-provoking questions about how to apply the lesson in our own lives.

Parables of Jesus Coloring Book Devotional
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The next page contains a full-page illustration of a woman sewing a patch onto a beautiful robe.While I was coloring the picture, I reflected on the devotional, and the questions. It gave me the perfect opportunity to turn my focus to the Lord and relax while meditating on the Word.

Did I mention I love this book? I do. ❤️

 

The book itself is 192 pages and includes forty-six devotionals. Some of the other parables included in this devotional coloring book include:

  • Aged wine skins with new wine
  • Light of the world on a lampstand
  • Where is your treasure stored
  • The virgins and the trimmed lamps
  • The woman and the lost coin
  • Be ready for the return of the master
  • The wise man builds his house upon the rock;
    the foolish man builds his house upon the sand.
  • The parable of the sower
  • One lost sheep
  • The good Samaritan
  • The prodigal son
  • The rich man and Lazarus
  • The Pharisee who prayed loudly vs.
    the tax collector who prayed for mercy
  • and many, many more!

The Parables of Jesus Coloring Book Devotional
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Each page containing a devotional reflection is laid out the same with the exact same leafy frame, so you would have to get creative if you don’t want each one of those to look the same; however, those really aren’t the pages you’re going to want to color.

There is ample room for journaling on each devotional page as well as the back of the illustrations should you need extra room to write. (I personally prefer to keep my journaling in a separate composition book.)

Specifications and a Surprise!

Parables of Jesus Coloring Book Devotional
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The thick pages measure roughly 10″ x 10″ and are printed on only one side, which is great because you don’t have to worry about ink or watercolors bleeding through to the next page. (In the off-chance the colors do soak through, they will transfer onto the following devotional page which features the exact same layout and design pattern as all the other devotional pages, NOT one of the illustration pages). In other words, it’s a no-worry coloring book that will minister to your soul!

As part of my evaluation of the book, I used a variety of media including chalk, colored pencils, and glitter gel pens. I had zero bleed through! What really surprised me, though, was how the book held up when I accidentally spilled a drink on the picture I was coloring. ? (It wasn’t a full cup, but it was enough to get all over the page.) I quickly blotted it dry, and much to my surprise, you cannot tell that I ever I spelled anything on it!

The Parables of Jesus Coloring Book DevotionalFinally, and this is just a bonus: The authors use a VARIETY of translations for the devotions. This is so refreshing!

One day, you’ll read from the Living Bible Translation; another day, you will read from the Amplified Version; and on another day, you will read from The Message; and so on.

I’m very impressed with The Parables of Jesus Coloring Book Devotional, and I definitely recommend it to anyone who loves to color. It would make a great gift, too!


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

“Tranquility” Prayer/Coloring Journal

Tranquility: Prayer and Reflection Coloring Journal

This beautiful Tranquility: A Prayer and Reflection Coloring Journal invites us to slow down and reflect on God’s goodness and what He has done (or is doing) in our lives. The journal is something to be treasured whether you are the only one who ever sees inside its pages or if you take my challenge and share it between friends—more on that later.  (Click here if you you like to read the last page of a novel first.)

First of all, if you’re anything like me, you often find yourself wondering where the month went…or week…or day. Tranquility: A Prayer and Reflection Coloring Journal is the perfect tool to help me slow down, pay attention, and calm my heart.

The book is brimming with beautiful, blank drawings which invite you to add your own color and words as you reflect on the inspirational sayings, Bible verses, and decorative drawings the artist has provided to evoke a sense of peace and calmness.

Tranquility: A Prayer and Reflection Coloring Journal
Inside spread with a prayer, Bible verse, space to journal, and an intricate drawing (with words–not all of them have words) to color. 

The pages in the Tranquility Journal are set-up as spreads with each theme carrying across both pages. The layout of the spreads vary between:

  • A guiding prayer*, Bible verse or inspirational quote, space to journal, something to color across the spread; and
  • A suggested activity or reflection with ample space to draw or journal and something to color on the facing page.

The prayers were compiled and adapted by Amie Carlson from 365 Pocket Prayers for Women and are perfectly paired with Bible verses or inspirational quotes to enhance the theme of the specific reflection on that spread.

Gorgeous Spreads with Thoughtful Words

Inside spread with a guided reflection on the left and a lovely picture to color on the right.

Each spread is specifically designed to calm your heart and mind so you can focus on the Lord and what He has for you that day. There is ample space for you to write your own prayer and or reflection for that day, and the pictures really are beautiful.

Tranquility Coloring JournalThe only negative comment I have about this book is that some of the pages are either already colored or have some color on them which somewhat limits creativity for people who, like me, care about clashing. But the upside of this negative is that the colors they have chosen are lovely and do not detract in any way from the content. 

The book itself features a reinforced cover (thick board) which protects the inside pages from curling and provides a firm surface for coloring. 

The pages are thick enough to use gel pens without fear of bleed-through. I would not recommend water-based markers, Sharpie pens, or Koi pens, though. I personally prefer to use good-quality colored pencils which work well for blending and detail work.

Here are links to a couple of my favorite “tested and tried” coloring tools:

* You can pick up the U-Brands Colored Pencils at Costco for under $10 (assuming your local Costco carries them). They are GREAT!!!

Friends Who Pray Together Stay Together

At the beginning of my review I mentioned that I intend to do something special with my Tranquility Journal, and I’m excited to share this idea with you, in case you’d like to do it, too. 

Tranquility JournalRather than keep this treasure all to myself, I plan to share it with a few trusted friends at church (probably a group of 4-5 ladies total, but we’ll see what the Lord has in mind). I have started the process by coloring the spread of my choice and journaling some thoughts in the notes portion and will pass it along to my mentor. Over the course of a week, she will select a spread to color and add her thoughts to those pages.

The following week, she will pass it along to another woman at our church. The plan is for each of us to have the journal for a week, and pass it on to someone else on Sundays. Additionally, while we have the journal, we are to pray for the person who passed it to us, as well as the woman we’ll be passing it to the next week. I can’t wait to do this, and I look forward to sharing with you how this works. Once all the pages are colored, I’ll pass it onto my mentor  (Click here to get back to the top, if you skipped here first.)

I’m happy to recommend the Tranquility: A Prayer and Reflection Coloring Journal to you, and I would love to hear how you plan to use it—whether personally or between trusted friends. Feel free to comment below. 


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.  I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”