Since I’ve painted actual bells for this prompt in the past, I figured it was time for some sleigh bells. I remember gleefully singing Jingle Bells as a kid, thinking just how fun it must actually be to go riding in a one-horse open sleigh. Sadly, I’ve never experienced it, but happily, my childlike imagination can picture it fully. Like most dreams of childhood, I’ve never given up on the hope of experiencing the actual thing one day, but still enjoy picturing the possibility. We’re back home once again after visiting family in Texas and picked up Phineas from his pet resort this morning. Though he’s normally a rather silent basenji dog, he has lots to tell us when we retrieve him. Once in the car, he spoke to us nonstop, no doubt telling us about his adventures while at camp and also, very likely, telling us off at the same time. Though perfectly excited to see us initially, he adopted a rather cool tone soon after to let us know he wasn’t amused by our absence. As much as he complains about having to go to camp, when one of the caretakers went to retrieve him, we could see on the monitor that he wasn’t quite ready to leave yet. He was sniffing a particularly interesting butt of a corgi mix and couldn’t be bothered in that moment. Now, though, he’s already in bed, happy to be home again. And though we had a fabulous time with family, we’re quite happy to be home again as well.
While I was quickly doodlewashing this little entry for today, I was singing Jingle Bells in my head. Though it’s a bizarrely repetitive song, my favorite unique line has always been “dashing through the snow.” That’s a beautiful and exciting image that I just love! In my childhood dreams, my horse was a race horse and would set out at blistering speeds. I could feel the cold sting of snow as I imagined my sleigh zooming over hill after hill. I’m quite sure that actual sleighs never moved as fast as the one in my head, so perhaps it’s just as well that I’ve never experienced one. Sometimes, the best bit of magic is the kind that takes place inside a dream. And, this time of year always feels like I’m living inside a snow globe. It’s a lovely mix of memories from the past mingling with beautiful memories created in each and every special moment. For me, this consists of mostly silly moments that we experience. We’ve already played catchup with our Lego Advent calendars as well as our bonus Playmobil calendar. The latter was purchased as a one for us, and a one for our little niece in Paris experience. Thankfully, she’s at an age where having your uncles participate with you still seems cool and not totally strange at all.
But, even as I get older each and every year, I feel like, in many ways, I’m only getting younger. I’m living life through the eyes of my inner child and having a blast in the process. Any moment that I’m ever feeling sad, uninspired, or down, I just ask that little kid I once was what we should do next. It sounds almost ridiculous when I mention it here, but it works every single time. He tells me exactly what to do next and no matter how ridiculous it seems, I follow. As we travel this path together, I’m amazed and delighted at every turn. He makes me feel invincible and like I can do anything in the world I set my mind to DO. You’re currently reading a blog that my grown up self could never have maintained properly. There’s literally no way I could still show up each and every day after all of this time if my adult brain were in charge. In truth, I get it, I’ve just rambled at you yesterday so why on earth should I show up once again? Well, my little inner kid says, “because it’s so much fun!” That’s never a reason an adult gives without a touch of irony. But, in my heart, it’s all I truly believe. And as I continue to live my inexplicable little life, I do so with impossible glee and jingle bells. As I jingle all the way!
About the Doodlewash
Da Vinci Paint Co.: Nickel Azo Yellow, Terra Cotta, and Cobalt Blue. (My “Shiny” Trio).. 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!