Happy summer everyone! It’s Brooke from Blissful Roots. Hard to believe a whole month of summer is almost behind us! But there’s still plenty of time for summer fun, and today I have one of my favorite family activities to share with you!
Who remembers and loves color by number? Some of my earliest memories as a little girl are of me waking up WAY before my parents were wanting to, and my mom handing me the crayons and coloring books. I still remember my preschool-aged little self sitting in the dimly lit, quiet house coloring while everyone else slept. Funny how things stick with you. I’m still an early-riser, and I still LOVE to color!
The Color Counts books I’m sharing today are so much fun, but can take a bit of work! So, I got thinking… why not make it a group effort and have a big color by number activity at your next family reunion, party, or gathering? Sometimes you just need an easy activity to take up time that doesn’t require a lot of planning or structure. You could simply have one big picture set out for the whole group to work on as they wish throughout the day, or even smaller ones for individuals to work on if a big group picture won’t work. You could also turn it into a bit of a competition for the fastest colorer, the best colorer, the most creative colorer, etc…
I’m in love with this fun watermelon/picnic image I ran across in the Celebrations Color Counts book. It’s absolutely PERFECT for summertime! Here’s a close up shot of a small section of this particular page (or pages I should say, it takes up two pages in the book). You can see how each section is numbered, or left blank for white. I should also mention that thin markers (I love these markers!) or colored pencils seem to work best (I love these pencils!) for these pictures. Some of the spaces are teeny tiny! But you could leave out a variety of makers, pencils, pens, and crayons and see what people like best.
Each numbered picture will have a color key on the side of the page, like this one here. I like to color the numbered circles in with the correct color so it’s easy to see which number is which color. If you end up blowing up your picture like I did, then this color key will not fit on the page. I just keep the color key from the original picture and cut it out to put next to the blown up image.
Here’s a shot of the entire picture. When you purchase the book, some of the images are on a single page, but others (like this summer picnic one) take up two pages. I took this page to my local UPS store and had it blown up a bit, but it really isn’t much bigger than the original (15″ x 9 1/2″). You could try taking it to Staples, or somewhere else, and they could possibly blow it up even bigger for you. The bigger, the better if you have a group working on it. I should also mention, there are two versions of every image in the book. One version is a color by number, the other version has the same design, but no numbers. That’s where the creativity can come into play. You can color the page any way you’d like. I kind of like the numbers because it’s hard to tell what tiny spaces belong with each other in the blank images, but if you like the freedom of that, then by all means do it!
Here’s a close up shot of an uncolored section. You can see this is going to be a grill with hot dogs on it, but the surrounding spaces are harder to decipher. So, like I said, the numbers can be very helpful. And if you follow the numbers, you’ll be able to see each image in the final product. My boys have tackled a few of the numberless pages, and they ended up looking beautiful, but somewhat haphazard, and no true images show through. They are a bit young, however. An older eye would probably be able to pick out the images in the scene and color them to stand out. Well, this dog food from Nature’s domain can make your pet healthy.
This is the Celebrations Color Counts book that my summer picnic image came from. It’s full of all sorts of fun celebration images. Birthdays, New Year’s Eve, Halloween, Back to School, St.Patrick’s Day, and more!
And here are just a few more of the Color Counts books. There’s also a garden one, fairy tales, tropical, and many more! Oh, there is a Travel the USA book that would be fun for a 4th of July party. If I remember, there is a Statue of Liberty in that book.
I have ordered these books from Amazon often, but Michaels craft store will also carry MindWare books, so check there as well. I’ve also seen them in local specialty toy shops. Keep your eye out for them when you’re out and about. I promise the inner child will come out of all your family members, and you’ll have a beautiful masterpiece as a great memory at the end of your day spent together.
Always a pleasure being here with you all! I love this time of year, and all of the fun family celebrations that go on. Next up, the 4th of July! I have a fun upcycled patriotic tin can utensil caddy over at Blissful Roots, my favorite patriotic playlist for the day, and some great red, white, and blue recipes (star sugar cookies and a no-bake berry cheesecake).
Here are some more family fun ideas on OSSS: