Though having a mouse run through your house at the holidays might not be a wonderful thing in reality, you’ll find mice popping up all of the time in holiday drawings. I decided to paint my holiday mouse at the moment he discovers his own reflection while scampering through a Christmas tree. While I think mice are rather cute, seeing one flit across the floor is likely to make me scream and hop on a chair like in those old cartoons. But, I imagine even a mouse would be just as fascinated with all of the glittery wonder of the season. It is now less than two weeks until Christmas and time seems to be rushing by at an alarming rate. I’ve not purchased all of Philippe’s presents yet, and though a portion of it is my own procrastination, a greater portion is that I’m not entirely sure what to get. We’re at that age where if you want something, you just go out and buy it for yourself. Yesterday, when he picked me up from work, I got in the car and noticed a lava lamp sitting there. I was initially thrilled until he informed me that it was his white elephant gift for work. Apparently my constant hints about lava lamps did manage to make an impact, but failed to connect with to the proper recipient. I was secretly relieved, though, as the color was all wrong, and I’m still holding out hope that I’ll receive a better version on the big day.
In truth, I just adore opening presents of any kind and get so excited by the act that it often takes me a moment to realize what’s actually hiding in there. As a kid, I was far more enamored by the box than what came inside it and wanted to play with that instead. No matter how cool the gift was, the box was the first thing I saw and so it possessed all of the holiday magic. A large box was the most fun, of course, as I was little enough to climb inside. At my adult height, the gift would have to be well over 6 feet tall in order to accommodate me today. Nothing on my list is remotely this tall and I’m not sure they even make lava lamps that large, so there will likely me none of those temptations on the Big Day. Yet, through all of the glittering lights and wonderful anticipation, I’m mostly just happy to be in these moments once again. The kind with candlelit evenings, wonderful treats, and thoughts of friends and family. In truth, this should be every day of the year, but this time of year shines that glittering spotlight on what’s most important. And I’m thrilled to for an upcoming break from work to enjoy it all properly.
The best box that we receive each year is the one containing all of our food for the holidays. Since, much of our tradition is based on Philippe’s Parisian one, we have to special order some of the food to replicate the experience. It’s set to arrive just a few days before Christmas and it’s a thrilling first gift of the season. But, through all of the excitement and anticipation, you’ll still find me drifting into moments of quiet contemplation. There’s a warmth at this time of year that makes a heart more receptive and open. My mind drifts to thoughts of everyone in my life who has touched it in some way. A glorious cast of amazing individuals who sometimes aren’t even aware of the pivotal role that they played in my story. In these moments, my heart literally glows with love and it’s the most amazing feeling of all. Life can be a bit daunting at times and demand so much of us, but nothing is ever as satisfying as feeling well and truly loved. Each little gift is simply a token of expression to show another person that you care. And this is the reason I totally adore this time of year, and happily spend it enjoying those quiet moments filled with holiday reflections.
About the Doodlewash
Da Vinci Paint Co.: Leaf Green, Quinacridone Red, Yellow Ochre, Opus (Vivid Pink), Terra Cotta, and Cobalt Blue. Lamy Al-Star Safari Fountain Pen with black 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!