Something To Treasure

Chipmunk Eating Colorful Rainbow Grapes Watercolor Illustration

Thought I’d jump in for the prompt of “Grapes” today, with a little chipmunk eating some ripening ones. While I’ve always celebrated April as my birthday month, today is actually the official day of my birth (and I was even born on a Tuesday!). Also, it’s a bit of a milestone as I’m turning 50 years old today. This was the number that came with a lot more of those extra little wishes of things I’d love to accomplish by this time. But truly, it just feels sort of great that I’ve lived a happy life for 50 years. Things haven’t always gone as planned and there’s a lot on that massive list that I wasn’t quite able to DO, but I did manage to check quite a few things off. My dream since childhood was to write and illustrate a picture book, and I just received proof copies of both the paperback and hardback versions of my book today! So that was a fun first gift, and those will be available to purchase in the next couple of weeks. I’m really proud of this new book as it feels like the start of a fun new journey. And I’m excited to keep right on sketching stuff all the way through this next new decade!

Tonight, however, I’m most excited to have a glass of champagne and enjoy a lovely dinner with Philippe. And my dog Phineas, of course, as he’ll be right next to us begging for treats the entire time as usual. This weekend, one of my best friends is having a tiny little outdoor party for me so that will be super fun. It’s not quite the same without the hugs, but those will be returning later this year I hope. My last birthday was right after everything went into lockdown and so I didn’t really end up doing anything particularly special for that one. I didn’t even request any presents from Philippe. So, this year, I told him that I DO want presents! Nothing excessive, mind you, but a little something that I could unwrap. There’s not really much that I want, but my inner child just had to have a little something extra this year. I like little happy surprises. They sort of balance out any of the unhappy surprises that crop up in life.

This has definitely been a wildly different sort of year. But, it’s also been a wonderful reminder of the importance of those little things that mean the most in life. There’s not much I need to make me happy when I really consider it. And, as it turns out, I have everything I could want. Well, okay, I do hope the softening butter that I saw on the counter when I left for work this morning means Philippe is making cake later. I could use a bit of that as well. Sure, I also really want hugs again, but I know those too will return in time. Beyond that, I have my wonderful husband and our little dog who is super persnickety, but equally adorable. No matter how stressful the day might become, they are always there to make it all better again each evening. Home isn’t just a place, it’s where a heart feels the safest. And to me, that’s definitely something to treasure.

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About the Doodlewash

Da Vinci Paint Co.:  Hansa Yellow Medium, Vermilion, Quinacridone Red, Opus (Vivid Pink), Leaf Green, Terra Cotta, Phthalo Blue, Cobalt Turquoise, and Indigo. 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!
Chipmunk Eating Colorful Rainbow Grapes Watercolor Illustration Sketchbook Detail
Recommended2 recommendationsPublished in By Charlie
  1. Janis Huntley 6 months ago

    A Very special Birthday wish for a Very special person!
    ( wishes from Canada😁)
    Can’t wait to read the new book !

  2. Claire 6 months ago

    Happy birthday Charlie 🍾🥂🎂 I can’t wait to check out your new book. Have a wonderful evening.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 6 months ago

      Thanks so much, Claire! 😃💕 aww I hope you enjoy the new book… I’m very excited about it!

  3. Nita Marlette 6 months ago

    Happy Birthday Charlie! 🥰
    (I’m a Tuesday’s child too…in May)

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 6 months ago

      Thanks so much, Nita! 😃💕 Yay for being a Tuesday child! Happy early birthday month!

  4. writerleenda 6 months ago

    Hey Charlie Happy Birthday! The 13th was my aunt’s birthday too (1913, a year before the Titanic sank on that date if I got that right). Here’s a hug from Canada’s hot spot! Take care and tell Philippe you get two big pieces of cake.

    Take care!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 6 months ago

      Thanks so much! 😃💕 Oh that’s wonderful I share a bday with your aunt! Thanks for the hug! Sending you a big one back!!

  5. Nellie Nellie 6 months ago

    HAPPIEST BIRTHDAY EVER!! How grateful I am that we are all here to celebrate you🤗👏👏👏 Numbers are just numbers but some are really cool! When I hit the ‘5-O’ I told people, “See! I’m not a quitter!”💁‍♀️ And five years later I started my art journey over☺ You are cooking with gas my friend! Of course your newest book is only one more in a long line of successes-and we’ll all cheer that!! EVERY blessing is my birthday prayer for you (and yours)! PS:Don’t forget to tell us how to get signed copies of that book🤗

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 6 months ago

      Thanks so much!! 😃💕 hehe… I love the idea of simply not being a quitter! So true! Thanks SO much for cheering me on. I really appreciate it. As for signed copies… I hadn’t even thought about that. hehe… so I’ll have to think about it!

  6. Sandra Strait 6 months ago

    Happy, happy Birthday, Charlie! Congratulations on becoming 50 years young and for getting your book finished. I can’t wait to purchase a copy!

  7. Mary Roff 6 months ago

    Happy Birthday!!!! Hope all of your birthday wishes come true! 🤗

  8. LoriC 6 months ago

    HaPpY BiRtHdAy ChArLiE!!!! Hope it is everything you hope for…..especially cake! We all need birthday cake!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 6 months ago

      Thanks so much, Lori! 😃💕 hehe! I DID get cake and it was delicious!!!

  9. Lisa 6 months ago

    Happy 50th birthday!

    I got my 2nd shot on Monday!! I’m juked up about it! Part of the herd.

    Are you back at work?

    I hope you do another paint/blog tomorrow so we can find out what little gifts you got. Like me, we don’t need stuff, but a little thing is much appreciated!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 6 months ago

      Thanks so much, Lisa! 😃💕 I go into the office a couple days a week and it’s just me and my art director in masks at this point. And yay for your second shot! I just got my today actually. I’m only doing posts every few days as I’m working on the next book, but I got a Lego Bonsai Tree that was sold out everywhere and that make me so happy. And… a couple Star Wars Legos and a Nintendo Switch game. Literally nobody would think the person receiving these things was turning 50! lol 😉

  10. Jenneke 6 months ago

    Happy birthday, Charlie! Hoping all your wishes come to pass! I celebrated my birthday on Friday, the same day of the week as the day I was born. On that occasion my Dad brought my Mom a huge bouquet of daffodils. This year they were out in full glory (not always the case here in Ontario), so I was able to do that, too!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 6 months ago

      Thanks so much, Jenneke! 😃💕 And a very happy belated birthday to you! Cool that it was also on the same day you were born. And yay for daffodils!

  11. Marisela Delgado 6 months ago

    🎉🎉🎂🎂🍨🍨🎉🎉 Feliz Cumpleanos, Charlie! 🎉🎉🎉🎉I hope that on this special day and birthday that your eyes and heart are opened to one major realization: YOU ARE LOVED. 💕💕💕 The best is yet to come. Many happy wishes, my friend. 💜 Felicidades💜

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 6 months ago

      Muchas gracias, Marisela! 😃💕 You’re too sweet. Sending you much love back my friend. I’m rather excited for all of the crazy things I’ll do in this decade! hehe… It’s going to be even more fun!!

  12. Mari 6 months ago

    🎈🎂 HAPPY, HAPPY, HAPPY Birthday to you 🎶! May your day be a sparkling one and the new year ahead filled with delightful surprises!

  13. Gary Middleton 6 months ago

    Happy birthday, Charlie. I love your new doodle.

  14. Cathy France 6 months ago

    Un bel et doux anniversaire pour vous, ici c’est mercredi – soyez heureux ! je pourrais obtenir vôtre livre, il pourra être livré en France ? bonne journée !

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 6 months ago

      Merci beaucoup, Cathy! 😃💕 As for the books. So far, all of my books are appearing on, but it sometimes takes a little time for the newest ones to appear!

  15. Mugdha 6 months ago

    Hello Charlie,

    Happy Happy Birthday!! I love the Doodlewash! The squirrel looks content and some of those grapes look like jewels. I do hope you get to cut and eat a big cake. Congratulations on the book. Can’t wait to see it. 🙂


    P. S. Thanks for the encouragement on the stories. If nothing else, I’ll write them to be able to share them with you some day. 🙂

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 6 months ago

      Thanks so much, Mugha! 😃💕 Glad you enjoyed this one! And I DID get cake… just a little bigger than Philippe normally serves it, but I still think it was rather small by American standards! hehe And YES! I’d love to read your stories some day!

  16. Fatima Chamkha 6 months ago

    Happy Birthday, Charlie 50 years now look forward to see more of you projects!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 6 months ago

      Thanks so much, Fatima! 😃💕 Yes! I’m excited for the new adventures that lie ahead!

  17. Robert Coleman 6 months ago

    Hi Charlie, Happy Half Century!! Hope your book proofs look super, but we are all sure they do. We can hardly wait! Enjoy your birthday cake and hopefully a surprise gift for you to unwrap. May God grant you many many years!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 6 months ago

      Thanks so much, Bob! 😃💕 hehe… yeah, I think a half century doesn’t make me feel old at all. It just feels like quite an accomplishment! And I really hope folks enjoy the new book series. I’m loving writing and illustrating them! Wish you all the best as well!

  18. shawnthompsonart 6 months ago

    Nice painting of a chipmunk. Too bad they are grapes and not skittles.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 6 months ago

      Thanks so much, Shawn! 😃💕 hehe… yeah… I do love Skittles!

  19. Mama Cormier 6 months ago

    Hope you had a happy day and continue to celebrate right to the end of the month.

  20. Sharon Bonin-Pratt 6 months ago

    Happy 50th Birthday, Charlie. You’ve done so much with the years you’ve been afforded, bringing much joy to your followers and obviously, special affection to those who know you personally. Looking forward to seeing where your imagination and grit takes you next.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 5 months ago

      Thanks so much, Sharon! 😃💕 I don’t feel 50 at all… still just a big kid. I’m excited to see where my story takes me during this next chapter!

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