What Hogwarts Means to Me

Hogwarts will always be there to welcome you home. // J.K. Rowling

What Hogwarts Means to Me

This is my 3rd year back to Hogwarts. See, like most of you, I didn’t get my letter until then. I didn’t get to experience the books as they came out one by one. I didn’t get to go to any movie premieres. As a child, I vaguely remember the Harry Potter fandom being born, but it didn’t mean anything to me.

At least not until three years ago when I finally decided to give the books a try. I loved reading as a kid, but I had gotten busy throughout college and books fell to the wayside. But I had started grad school, and I needed something to take my mind off of classes. So I purchased the e-book and could not stop reading.

I got through the whole series in about a month in a half. I cheered and laughed along with everyone. And when I got to the last book, I cried- not just because of all of the deaths, but because I was losing close friends. I didn’t want it to end!

So what does Hogwarts mean to me?

Hogwarts is a place where I can be myself; my imagination can run wild, and no one judges me there.  Hogwarts is a place where magic happens; not just wizardly magic, but the magic that happens inside your soul when you pick up that book. Hogwarts is a place where light conquers darkness. It’s a place that will always provide help if you need it. Hogwarts is a place where we’re all family.

So grab your best robes, your owl, and your wand. I’ll save you a seat on the Hogwarts Express!

I’d love to hear what Hogwarts means to you? What was your wizarding journey like?

6 Reasons Why Ravenclaws are Amazing

Or yet in wise old Ravenclaw, if you’ve a ready mind, Where those of wit and learning, Will always find their kind. // The Sorting Hat, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

This is part of a series I’m doing on each of the Hogwarts’ houses! You can check out Hufflepuff and Slytherin in previous posts (Gryffindor is coming soon!).

I’m a Hufflepuff, but I think I could have also been a Ravenclaw. Most people call them the “smart house.” But they are soooo much more than just that! Ravenclaws have a lot of traits that make them awesome, so let’s celebrate them!

 

Image from Pottermore.com

 

  1. Ravenclaws are wise. Your ‘claws are going to be the ones who think things through before doing them. They probably aren’t going to be the spontaneous ones since they make sure what they’re doing is a good idea first. They can use their critical thinking skills to ensure that things run smoothly.
  2. Ravenclaws are creative. This isn’t to say that your other houses aren’t, but Ravenclaws are most likely to be the artists, musicians, poets, and writers of the world. They can readily engage this area of their brains, making them a great person to go to when you need a fresh look at something. They can think outside of the box, allowing new ideas in.
  3. Ravenclaws are curious. Are all ‘claws going to be super smart? Probably not. But all Ravenclaws love learning. Whether that’s an academic subject or just something that they love. They naturally want to know all about everything! They’re the students that want to know “why” and “how”- not just “this is the way to do it.”
  4. Ravenclaws are cunning. This is a trait they share with Slytherins! Because they have great critical thinking skills, they are able to make some great plans. You’ll want to know some Ravenclaws when you’re trying to come up with the best way to do something, the best way to save money, or the best way to accomplish something.
  5. Ravenclaws are observant. Usually introverted, Ravenclaws are always watching the world around them. They might not say anything in a conversation, but you can bet they’re listening and learning constantly. They’ll notice if you’re having a bad day. You can bet they’ll know if you’ve worn the same pair of pants for the past week. They’ll be able to pick out the mistakes in a program or article.
  6. Ravenclaws are eccentric. Now, not every Ravenclaw is going to be a Luna. But because Ravenclaws are so creative and wise, they often don’t let the opinions of others rule what they do. This means they often march to their own beat. They don’t do something just because it’s the “normal” thing to do.

Just like with all of the houses, these traits aren’t just for Ravenclaws! I’ve met tons of creative Hufflepuffs, eccentric Gryffindors, and observant Slytherins. The Sorting Hat takes your desires into mind!

 

Image from Pottermore.com

 

Are you a Ravenclaw? What about this list fits you? What doesn’t? Anything you’d add? Let me know in the comments!

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets in Concert!

I first saw an ad for the Hawaii Symphony Orchestra playing the film score to Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone last year. I wanted to go so badly, but I was going to be out of town during the show. I was so disappointed! So when I saw that they were doing it again with the Chamber of Secrets, I knew I had to get a ticket!Processed with VSCO with m5 preset

I decided to go all out in my Hufflepuff uniform! I hadn’t been able to debut my new robe or cardigan yet, so I was very excited for the chance to do it! I’m usually a pretty shy person and don’t like to be noticed with my outfits, so I was a little nervous that I was going to be too extra.

But my fears were instantly put aside when I arrived! Lots of kids (and plenty of adults) were dressed up in the Hogwarts best! Wands, robes, scarves, and ties were seen everywhere! I felt really confident in my outfit, and was really happy that I decided to go all out! I definitely learned that if you love something, don’t be ashamed about it! Have fun, be yourself, and experience the magic!

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Me and my Potterhead friend Whitney!

 

I would totally do this again! Since I’ll be moving to Arizona this summer, I’m already stalking the Phoenix Symphony to see when their shows are!

Have you been to one of these movies in concert before? What did you see? I’d love to hear about it in the comments!

6 Reasons Why Slytherins are Amazing

Or perhaps in Slytherin, You’ll make your real friends, These cunning folks use any means to achieve their ends. // The Sorting Hat, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

This is part of a series I’m doing on each of the Hogwarts’ houses! You can check out Hufflepuff here (Ravenclaw and Gryffindor coming soon!)

Slytherins get a lot of bad rap- mostly because of our boy Draco Malfoy and many of the Death Eaters. Oh, and maybe because He Who Must Not Be Named himself was in that house. But a few bad apples don’t ruin the whole bunch! I’m here to tell you 6 reasons why Slytherins are super awesome.

 

Image from Pottermore.com

 

  1. Slytherins are ambitious. If you need something done or want something desperately- the Slytherins are your friends! They aren’t going to let something they want slip through their grasp. They’ll work their tails off until they get it. Nothing is too hard for them!
  2. Slytherins are cunning. The snake isn’t the mascot for Slytherin house on coincidence! Slytherins cook up plans that are almost fool-proof every time. They can read between the lines and find the loop-holes in almost everything. Slytherins aren’t going to let a few snags get in their way!
  3. Slytherins are resourceful. They aren’t wasting time or money willy-nilly because they can’t make up their mind. They’re going to plan out what’s needed and find the best deals to make it happen. If you’re having a party, you’ll definitely need to look up your nearest Slytherin for help. They’ll make sure it’s the best it can be (remember they’re ambitious!), but also make sure it’s not going to break the bank if it doesn’t have to.
  4. Slytherins are leaders. Slytherins are the ones you can look up to. They’re the ones taking the ship by the wheel when everyone else is floating in the breeze. They’re going to stand tall for their beliefs- no matter what. You might even call them traditionalists! They’re that solid rock that we all need in our lives.
  5. Slytherins have charisma. People are drawn to Slytherins. They just have something about them! They have big personalities that make people appreciate what they have to offer. They’re going to draw people in.
  6. Slytherins are disciplined. Once a Slytherin makes up his/her mind about something, they’ll stick to it. Starting a new workout plan? The Slytherin isn’t going to quit three days into it. Trying to get on the honor roll? The Slytherin is going to study every day for it. Looking for a job promotion? The Slytherin is going to be the best employee he/she can be. They’re not quitters.

 

Image from Pottermore.com

 

Obviously, these traits aren’t just for Slytherins! There are plenty of charismatic Ravenclaws, disciplined Hufflepuffs, and resourceful Gryffindors. The Sorting Hat listens to your desires, so you can be in whichever house you feel like is the best fit!

What house do you belong in? Do you have any other ways that Slytherins are amazing? I’d love to hear about them in the comments!

6 Reasons Why Hufflepuffs are Amazing

You might belong in Hufflepuff, Where they are just and loyal, Those patient Hufflepuffs are true, And unafraid of toil; // The Sorting Hat, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

Today is an unofficial (but official on social media) Hufflepuff pride day! It’s also the first day of spring which seems pretty fitting to me! (Although, as a Hufflepuff, I’m more autumn-leaning!)

Hufflepuffs don’t seem to get a lot of respect, and they’re often pinned as the weak ones or the “leftover” house. When I took the test on Pottermore, I was honestly sorely disappointed to get Hufflepuff. I would have gladly taken anything else. However, the more I thought about it, the more I realized I really was a Hufflepuff, and we Puffs are pretty awesome.

Image from Pottermore.com

Here’s why:

  1. Hufflepuffs are loyal. Insult a Puff (and while they may be a little upset for a while), they won’t hold it against you. They’re forgiving and understanding. We tend to look for the positives in people. We’re not going to let a silly misunderstanding, a lack of judgment, or hormones change how we feel about you.
  2. Hufflepuffs are hard-working. People often see us as just hanging around the Herbology greenhouses or stuffing our faces with cookies. While we might do this occasionally, we are driven people. Give us a task that we enjoy, and we will spend all of our time, resources, and mental strength on it. We don’t do things halfheartedly.
  3. Hufflepuffs are creative. This is true about all of the houses really, but I think we Puffs are pretty good at it. Since we see the world in a different light, we can use our imaginations at a whole new level. Who is the person daydreaming in class? It’s most likely a Hufflepuff. Who’s that person frantically jotting down that story idea on the bus? Probably a Puff. Who’s spending their weekend working on a new piece of art? You got it, probably a Hufflepuff.
  4. Hufflepuffs are kind. This goes along with being loyal- we’re going to stand up for you no matter what. We look out for the little guy. We make friends with the ones who don’t have any. It’s almost like we have a radar for those people who might be unloved. Need a friend? Hufflepuffs are there for you!
  5. Hufflepuffs are cozy. We’re not the party-ers. We’re not the daring adventurers. We’re not running around like crazy trying to get things done. In fact, you’ll probably have to push and prod to get us out of the house to a big gathering. Most of us are introverts, which mean we recharge by being alone. After a long day at work or school, we’re going to be found reading a book with a cup of tea. We’re going to be on a walk in the woods. We’re going to be snuggled by the fire. It doesn’t mean we don’t like loud gatherings, but they can be overwhelming. So if you need someone to just sit quietly with you, look up your closest Hufflepuff.
  6. Hufflepuffs are good listeners. We’re usually not trying to be the center of attention. If you’ve got a problem, we’ll listen. We might not be able to solve it, but we’ll definitely be there for you. We’ll give you a shoulder to cry on. We’ll smile and nod. We’ll make you a cup of coffee to warm your soul.

Obviously, many of these traits can be found in other houses too! I know super kind Slytherins, Ravenclaws who love to listen, and Gryffindors who are so creative! The great thing about your Hogwarts house is that you can have all of these traits and belong to whatever house you’d like- because the Sorting Hat always takes your opinions into consideration!

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Sorting hat scene from Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

I’d love to know what house you belong to! Do you think there are some other ways that Hufflepuffs are amazing? What are some characteristics that make YOU amazing? Comment below!

(And don’t worry if you’re not a Puff- I’ll be blogging about ALL of the houses in the future!)

 

Reaction to “Crimes of Grindelwald” Teaser Trailer

One of my top movies of 2016 was definitely “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.” Getting the chance to go back to the Wizarding World was absolutely amazing. I loved the characters, the story, and of course the beasts!

The main characters for the new Fantastic Beasts film

Image from Pottermore.com

So like most Potterheads, I’ve been anxiously awaiting the trailer for the second installment of the series! I’m hoping for a lot of things in this film, so fingers crossed it meets my expectations!

If you haven’t seen the teaser yet, you can watch it below!

Getting to see Hogwarts at the beginning was just wonderful! So much nostalgia with that! And then you see some people apparating onto Hogwarts’ grounds, so I’m interested in seeing how that happened! Maybe the rule that you couldn’t do that came after this story?

Then we see a confrontation with Dumbledore played by Jude Law. I really am loving this portrayal of him, even though I sort of thought Dumbledore would be a little more eccentric! Especially since he is in Harry Potter, but I guess we don’t see too much of him in this teaser. He still might be! Or maybe he just gets more like that as he gets older!

We then see Newt and the gang in Paris! I’m really excited to be able to see the wizarding world portrayed in all of these different countries. The various cultures intertwining with the magical communities will be so fun to watch!

We get to see a little of Grindelwald, the magical circus, and Pickett (my favorite fantastic beast!)! The trailer takes a dark turn, showing what looks like a magical stand-off/duel/battle at the end!

I was a little sad we didn’t get to see Ilvermorny (I was really hoping we’d get a glimpse of America’s wizarding school!), but we still might! I was also hoping for a little more of Grindelwald in the trailer, but I definitely don’t mind waiting for the movie to see more of him.

All in all I was very impressed with the trailer, and I’m really looking forward to November to see the movie! I’d love to hear your thoughts on it in the comments!

 

 

I Suspect the Nargles: Happy Birthday, Luna!

Don’t worry, you’re just as sane as I am.

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Me cosplaying as Luna in 2016! 

As soon as I read Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, I fell in love with Luna Lovegood. I mean, what’s not to love about her? I had always felt a little different than most people (mostly because I was a big nerd!). I connected with Luna. She was me! In fact, even according to some, we share the same Myers-Briggs type (INFP for those of you wondering). I loved getting to meet a character who was different, dreamy, and awkward. But a character who embraced that about herself and didn’t try to conform to the majority.

Luna wearing her Spectre Specs and clutching the Quibbler

Picture Credit: https://www.pottermore.com/explore-the-story/luna-lovegood

So happy birthday to the one who taught me to embrace every part of me. The one who taught me that it’s okay to be smart. The one who taught me that the things we lose have a way of coming back to us, if not always in the way we expect. Happy birthday to the girl who helped me realize that it’s okay to love dessert. And most importantly, the one who taught me that being kind is the most important thing anyone can be.

PS- I’ve gathered up a few of my favorite Luna-inspired items on the Etsy! Check them out!

Luna’s dirigible plum earrings

Luna’s butterbeer cork necklace

Spectrespec necklace

Quibbler magazine

Luna skirt