With less than 24 hours to go before the Christmas Eve festivities begin in our house, I’m giddy with excitement! I decided to quickly illustrate our Christmas stockings. Mine’s the one in the middle, and I’m assuming you can guess which one belongs to Phineas and therefore Philippe. I’ve just finished wrapping each of Philippe’s Christmas gifts and placed them under the tree. As I type this, Philippe is upstairs wrapping my presents. I’ve heard a few thuds and odd noises, but mostly I just hear him singing, so things must be going okay. He didn’t want to see all of his gifts, so I just sort of hid the worst wrapped ones at the back of the tree. It was difficult to decide which was wrapped the worst, though, as I’m terrible at wrapping gifts. I have zero patience for it, so I did my usual mad dash of frantic gift concealment. There’s usually at least one side that doesn’t look like it’s been chewed by mice, so that’s the one I proudly face outward while using bows to strategically hide any unfortunate mishaps. One gift has five bows on it, but that betrays nothing special about what’s inside and is simply a trophy of my severely challenged wrapping skills.
Thankfully, this time of year is mostly lit by flickering candles that make everything sparkle and seem delightful. Even the oddest wrapped gifts. The first gift I wrapped went okay and I think turned out rather nice. But, as ever, my attention deficit issues clicked in, so each subsequent gift received less and less care. The last gift looks like it’s been mauled by raccoons drunk on eggnog. I think I’ll give this one to him first, although I’ve already forgotten what’s inside it. I’m quite aware of my own deficiencies and know to wrap his final gifts first, and mark them with a gold bow. We didn’t really get the items shown here for Phineas this year, as he’s not as interested in toys these days and simply wants treats. Being good dog parents, we’re not going to give him a stocking full of treats, but he’ll get a few extra little treats on the big day. He really won’t care what’s in the stocking and just be excited about getting anything at all. In truth, Philippe and I will feel much the same way. It’s a joy to receive any wonderful little thing you didn’t see coming, and that’s what makes this time of year so special.
While we have a perfectly lovely tradition in our little house, I get a bit sentimental about the family we’re not able to join. Sure, we’ll have texts and FaceTime on Christmas to link us all together, but there’s nothing to match the experience of actually being together for the holidays. Thankfully, love has a beautiful ability to travel across time and space. It’s not locked into a location or even a moment. Our hearts have the most amazing ability to connect us to those we adore any time we need to feel that warmth and love. So, in this moment, I’m sending my love to my family, miles and oceans away. I’m thinking of you and loving you from this little home filled with glittering lights. And I hope that all of you who celebrate during this time of year, and each and every person reading this, are having a fantastic time with friends and family. Give them each a hug from me and hold them close. Love is all around us and can be found everywhere we look. And it’s why I love this time of year most, wrapped in a blanket of hope and joy, and cherishing the sight of those three little stockings.
About the Doodlewash
Da Vinci Paint Co.: Quinacridone Red, Aureolin, Yellow Ochre, Leaf Green, Cobalt Turquoise, 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!