Mulled Wine Doodlewash by Charlie O'Shields


So the winner today is something you sip on during the holidays, which could obviously include hot chocolate, but nothing beats a glass of mulled wine! This isn’t something that was part of my tradition, but Philippe started doing it each year and so it’s become our new tradition at the holidays.

Mulled wine starts with wine, of course, to which you add mulling spices and orange zest, among other things. It’s the perfect way to do something with that cheap bottle of wine someone brought to your last party. Not that this ever happens, but should it occur, just mull that baby and give it some new life.

We had mulled wine while we were putting up our Christmas tree, and may have it again in the next couple weeks. Right now, the race is still on for getting gifts. Philippe loves to give gifts almost more than receiving them and he gets insanely excited during this week. He keeps sort of but not quite mentioning what he bought me and can barely contain himself.

All of our main gifts are opened on Christmas Eve. Not all at once, but throughout the evening as we eat the one thing I can make, gravlax, and the amazing foie gras that Philippe makes. We spend the evening snacking and drinking wine and watching the clock to see if it’s time to open another gift. I love watching Philippe choose which gift he will let me open and the look on his face as he sits just a couple feet away watching me, practically shivering with anticipation. This could end awkwardly were he not such an amazing gift giver!

I, on the other hand, am still struggling with what to get him. Though I have managed a few gifts, he’s just informed me that his count is slightly higher than mine and he’s not done. Since, equal numbers are required for this little tradition, I have to figure out something else to buy him in the next 48 hours or risk not having it arrive on time.  Or much worse, actually have to set foot in a store at this time of year. The thought of which makes me cringe.

I envy people who are amazing at always selecting the perfect gift. Perhaps they have magical powers I simply don’t possess, or perhaps they’re not always trapped in their own head and are more observant. Either way, I’m not one of them and so I just end up getting whatever weird thing comes to mind. Sometimes this ends up well and other times it’s just a weird thing. But Philippe doesn’t seem to mind and it never makes the evening any less fun.

A few of the gifts I have already purchased I wrapped today and placed under the tree. When I picked up Philippe from work and told him, he said it’s too soon and I needed to hide them immediately. He waited downstairs my the garage while I ran up and frantically looked for a place to stash them. I don’t remember this being part of our tradition, but apparently, the gifts have to come out at the last minute. Based on my current lack of shopping success, this could work out quite well!

Posted by:Charlie O'Shields (doodlewash)

Creator of Doodlewash® and founder of World Watercolor Month™ (July) and World Watercolor Group™. Sharing daily watercolor illustrations and stories while proudly featuring talented artists from all over the world!

50 replies on “Mulled Wine

  1. My husband and I used to drink hot buttered rum around the holidays but now we just drink wine. I will have to try mulling some as your doodlewash looks delish, Charlie! ❤️ My husband won’t put any of my gifts under the tree either because I always have a way of guessing the contents and this irritates him. Lol! 😊 We aren’t buying much for each other this year because we are getting new iPhones. 😄 I don’t like shopping much in the stores either. I don’t think you can ever go wrong with art books or art supplies or cooking gadgets or cookbooks… You can see what I like! Hehe! 🎁🎁🎁

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Wow your mulled wine looks so tasty! I actually don’t know if I have ever experienced mulled wine…how can that be?! Add that to the list of things to do! I love that you linger over gift opening, we do too. Its so much more fun that way! Happy shopping and wrapping Charlie!

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  3. So adorable – your life – your story – your traditions with Philippe! So AMAZING your doodlewash of mulled wine (as I sip my Cabernet and watch the Voice finale) I have no double you will find some amazing, perfect gifts for Philippe. I wish I could be a fly on the wall and experience all your excitement. Happy Holiday love to you Charlie O. Waiting for your visit to Mars!

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  4. aha! Mulled wine is so festive! Here in Sweden they sell glögg, and a lighter alcohol content in the grocery store so I can let the kids share in the taste of the red wine based spicy warm drink, and always cook with star anise, kardemum, cinnamon stick, raisins and add a few almonds in the mug!

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  5. Great image and pretty festive drink. Our youngest came back from Denmark with a recipe for a sort of Grog, which I think amounts to a mulled wine. I’m sure she’ll keep monkeying with recipe again this year. Sounds like you are having some festive times, Charlie.

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  6. You ever painted Phillipe’s portrait? Just thinking out loud here. If i remember correctly – handmade gifts still elicit warm, wonderful feelings. At least they did last time i had someone to give one to, LOL

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    1. I did paint Philippe…he was my first portrait …if you search my site for Phone Booth Portrait you can see it. Didn’t quite get the likeness right. I’m not very good with doodlewashing people! 😊 And other than a painting, I can’t make anything by hand! Lol


      1. you’re saying you can’t do anything with your hands except paint? somehow … I just find that difficult to believe, 😉
        (ok, so a baaaad joke – what can I say – it’s early early)

        So grab a photo of a favorite vacation the two of you took – something that means a lot maybe – doodlewash it.

        c’man man — I know you got creativity somewhere 😉
        — I checked out Phone Booth Portrait — didn’t mean to bring up frustration, heh

        Liked by 1 person

      2. “Make” anything…not “do” …lol … And he already selected a doodlewash from my France tour, so that’s been done! Hehe…I think I’ve got some good gifts though. And no frustration! Hehe…I seriously need to get over my issue with doodlewashing people. I just like animals better. 😊lol


  7. Not to be rude but I think I’ll pass on the mulled wine – I’ve very much enjoyed looking at it though! I share your envy at those who always seem to get it spot on the money. I’m absolutely hopeless searching out Christmas gifts for anybody, I just wander around aimlessly in the desperate hope that something will jump out. If it doesn’t, then prepare to be disappointed 😛

    I’ve no doubt the elves will lead you to something perfect for Philippe, though indeed, time’s pressing on – skates on! Happy hunting!

    Liked by 1 person

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