Before the New Year brings its share of kisses, there’s first a little tradition of kissing under the mistletoe. Quickly illustrated here, as I’m about the travel to see family and speedy illustrations will be the status quo for the next few days. We don’t really have this particular little ritual in our home today, but as a kid you’d find mistletoe hung in the various homes that our family visited around the holidays. As a young boy, I usually did all I could to avoid it in general. I was curious about kissing, to be sure, but not enough to embarrass myself my actually attempting to do so in public. And, as a boy of a different persuasion, being coaxed to kiss little Suzy wasn’t really my dream. It’s funny to look back now and realize just how awkward I was early on, even before puberty came along to finish the job. And today, I’m not sure if I’m really any less awkward or simply a touch more confident in allowing myself to be crazy me. It’s never fun in life to pretend to be someone you think others would accept. I tried that when I was much younger, but the effect was always the same. I ended up not caring about whether other people liked me because I was far too busy disliking myself. So today, you’ll find me happily celebrating awkward, still waiting for that little curious kiss.
Philippe and I fly out in the morning for Texas, and though I should probably be packing or something, I’m not doing any preparation at all. Instead, I’ll be performing my usual mad morning dash of throwing everything into a carry on just as I rush out the door, hoping I managed to somehow remember everything. It occurs to me now my entire life is lived a bit like a doodlewash. Planning has never been a talent that I’ve ever possessed. It’s impressive to watch others do it, but when I try, I lose all interest in whatever I was planning in the first place. For me, I’ve learned, it’s always best to just jump in, hope for the best, and let the course chart itself as I go along. This is absolute craziness, by the way, and not something I’d recommend if you have indeed been blessed with the planning gene. But, I do have to admit that it makes life rather fun and unexpected. Perhaps this is the only true reason I approach life this way. I’m sure I could learn to plan things properly if I put in a bit of effort. Yet, I’d miss all of those lovely surprises. And for me, I like them most!
On that note, I have no plan in place for my posts as usual over the next few days. I will certainly still be sketching daily, but I’ve no idea when those posts will appear. Also, if you haven’t heard it yet, I released a special holiday episode of my Sketching Stuff podcast yesterday! I hope you’ll take a listen and leave me a comment! If you’re a daily follower, I just wanted to give you a heads up that things might be even a bit more random over the next few days. I’m excited to be reunited with family and outside of a dinner theatre performance this weekend, I’ve no idea what plans await me! The trip usually begins with a visit to the grocery store to grab a few bottles of wine and snacks and quite possibly a trip to Walmart. We always have at least one or two puzzle we assemble while there, but last year my mother brought out one with only sand dunes. Not only did this lack my treasured Christmas icons, but also the act of trying to determine the difference between 50 shades of beige is not my idea of a good time. But, it’s fun to let life and dreams collide and just wait and see what the world has in store for me, like waiting under the mistletoe.
About the Doodlewash
Da Vinci Paint Co.: Vermilion, Leaf Green, Quinacridone Red, Opus (Vivid Pink, Cobalt Blue, 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!
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!