For our prompt of “Poinsettia,” I paired one with a little English robin and a pine branch. When I was a kid, my mom would always get a poinsettia plant that she’d pick up at the grocery store and place near the fireplace. This was in our downstairs recreation room that was also the home of our Christmas tree. Though red was certainly a festive color, the pot was always made ever more festive by being wrapped in silver or gold foil. Our tree was artificial, so having a poinsettia pot in the room added a little touch of life. That said, it was often lucky to survive the season, as though the tree might have been green, our thumbs were not. So, indoor plants were actually quite rare and since this particular plant only arrived once a year it made it that much more special. Though yeah, apparently still not special enough to water it appropriately, but so enjoyable while it lasted. And as the lights flickered on the tree, spraying the reflections of shiny ornaments into the room, it marked the beginning of the prettiest time of year in our house.
Though there were some holiday decorations upstairs in my childhood home, nearly all of the decorations ended up in that downstairs room. It was like entering a magic portal of some kind and being teleported to the North Pole. The odd wooden shingles that adorned the walls, seeming strangely out of place the rest of the year, were suddenly the perfect backdrop for a rustic Christmas scene. The fireplace had real wood crackling inside it and there was a piano nearby. Two actually, as my dad was a bit of a collector. In the center of it all, this room had a thin post that was apparently holding up the house. When the holidays arrived, the artificial tree was built around this post disguising it entirely. Lights and tinsel flickered from ever corner of the room and it was simply impossible to do anything but smile upon entering it. One of the least attractive rooms in the house became the magical center of a holiday universe for just about six weeks. It was always so much fun to see it all appear.
Today, Philippe and I live in a two-story row home, and the first floor has the kitchen and an open floor plan. You can see from one end of the house to the other. Though we spend all of our evening on the side with the kitchen, at the other end of the house is a room with a fireplace. This one is gas and comes with a remote. The lights are also on a remote. One press of a button and the entire room lights up, and then we press the button again before heading to sleep. It’s awesome! And though this room can get a bit cluttered during the year, at this time of year, it’s cleaned up a bit and becomes a shimmering masterpiece of holiday goodness. Shiny reindeer come out to play again and our four little candles that spell Noël are flickering on the mantel with more glittering lights. The lights on the tree dance through years of collected ornaments and I stop and spot one I’d almost forgotten we had. The two glass cloches on the table have tiny specs of light that make it look like even summer fireflies couldn’t help but stick around for the party. And each time I sit in my new special room, I feel so much joy. All of the magic I once felt as a kid comes flooding back to me as I’m once again surrounded by my pretty holiday things.
About the Doodlewash
Da Vinci Paint Co.: Aureolin, Quinacridone Red, Benzimida Orange, Cobalt Turquoise, Terra Cotta and Ultramarine (Green Shade). Staedtler Pigment Liners 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!