Today I was definitely able to make Philippe smile when he picked me up from work, by announcing I didn’t have anything to paint for our prompt of chocolate today. He’s a bit of a “chocoholic” which is apparently a real word as my spell check didn’t alert me to any problems just now. As addictions go, I don’t share it, but I really do enjoy chocolate. So, we stopped at our favorite local chocolatier, Christopher Elbow, and grabbed a little box as a treat. We chose a colorful selection of various flavors from Lavender to Venezuelan Spice. This type of gourmet chocolate entrances me because, not only is a great deal of attention put into the flavor, the visual is a glittering little piece of art. And chocolate can be a bit tough to paint and make look interesting in its typical dark brown form. We will enjoy these over the next several days, typically cutting just one in half and sharing it each night. But, if one goes missing between now and tomorrow night, I’m pretty sure it will be a mystery that’s rather easy to solve.
While I was painting this, Philippe was ironically next to me watching a show about eating addictions. These were not folks with addictions to chocolate or anything you might expect or even actually eat, but bizarre ones like people who ate pounds of raw meat or boxes of corn starch. Listening to the episode in the background, was a bit distracting and I had to stop and watch in awe at certain parts. Suffice it to say, our little chocolate treat didn’t seem very indulgent after all. Yet, in response to that show, our dinner was just a bit lighter this evening. But, little treats, served at just the right moment are a wonderful thing indeed. I knew Philippe was tired and ready to go home tonight, so making an extra stop, could be met with an objection. But when that stop involves a glistening box of chocolates, I was simply met with a happy and enthusiastic “Yes!” And yes, a big glowing smile. As much as I enjoy smiling myself, making others smile is probably my favorite thing in the world.
Whenever I feel a little tired or stressed, as I did a bit today, my first response is always to make someone else smile. This is guaranteed to fill me with joy and erase anything negative that I was feeling. Though I am an altruistic person, the real reason is quite simple and practical. Smiles make me smile and, unless I’m near a mirror, it’s impossible to see my own. So, to me, if I can just see a glimpse of that happiness in others, my entire mood will change for the better. I’ll be reminded of everything good and fantastic in the world and the stress simply fades away. That’s why I’m smiling tonight. We’ve yet to actually try our little gift to ourselves, but it’s going to happen just after this post. A little shared bit of happy that’s such a small and silly thing, and yet so perfectly wonderful. No matter what happens in a day, the night can always be turned around by spending it with someone you love and a box of gourmet chocolates.
About the Doodlewash
Da Vinci Paint Co.: Nickel Azo Yellow, Leaf Green, Quinacridone Red, Benzimida Orange, Terra Cotta, Cobalt Turquoise and Cobalt Blue. Lamy Al-Star Safari Fountain Pen with sepia ink in an A5 Hahnemühle Watercolour Book. Want to purchase a print of this doodlewash? Send me a note with a link to this post, and I’ll add it to my shop!
Creator of Doodlewash®, founder of World Watercolor Month (July), World Watercolor Group™, and host of the Sketching Stuff Podcast. Sharing daily watercolor illustrations and stories while proudly featuring talented artists from all over the world! If you’d like to be a guest artist on Doodlewash.com, contact me!