July Book: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child


It’s time for me to review #CursedChild. I read it as soon as I could get my hands on it, and although it was different from the seven books in the Harry Potter series, I loved it. It felt magical and nostalgic and familiar, albeit different and different and different.

It’s different.

People seem to collectively hate this play (it’s a play! Not a novel!) because it’s not the same as the seven HP books. If you’re expecting Harry Potter 8, you’ll be disappointed. But this isn’t Harry Potter 8; it’s a play about Harry and his family 19 years after the 7th book.

I’ll admit there were some weirdish things, like the trolley cart witch and Voldemort having a kid. But a) whatever and b) two other guys helped JK Rowling, so it’s not like this is canon…

Here are a few thoughts of mine:
1. If this doesn’t confirm that Ron and Hermione are soulmates, I don’t know what else could.

2. Voldemort doesn’t have a kid.

3. Aww Albus and Scorpius. Aww Scorpius and Rose. <3 4. Awwwww Malfoy!! :'( 5. Not a huge fan of Hermione being minister. Not that she wouldn't be FANTASTIC. I just distinctly recall her saying, "No, I’m not [going to work at the Ministry of Magic], I’m hoping to do some good in the world!" 6. So Harry made some parenting mistakes. Literally everyone does. 7. Trolley witch???? 8. Portrait Dumbledore?? 9. This is Back to the Future meets Harry Potter 10. Get me to London RN. So yeah. I'm happy. I'm not really taking this as canon, but it filled me with joy all the same.

I Want to be McGonagall When I Grow Up

In honor of Harry’s today, I wore my new Gryffindor skirt. In honor of Neville’s birthday yesterday, we watched the first six HP films and ate delicious HP food. In honor of growing up with these amazing stories, I am passing on the magic to my students by striving every day to be as much like Minerva Mcgonagall as muggley possible.

Let me explain why she is my hero.

1. She’s patient.

2. She’s super invested in the success of her house/ students.

3. She has high expectations.

4. She’s straight up and honest all the time.

5. She has a huge heart, and it’s in the right place.

6. She cares about the students individually.

7. She’s an expert classroom manager.

8. She takes pride in her students.

9. She’s tastefully sarcastic.

10. She’s pretty much the definition of BA.

I am so grateful for a role model like Minerva McGonagall to inspire me. I will do my best to follow her example every day!


I know this is super belated, but I want to take this time to honor Alan Rickman, recently departed living embodiment of Severus Snape.

About 5 years ago, I joined a Facebook group called “We Demand an Oscar to Alan Rickman for His Role as Severus Snape” along with 32,319 other devoted fans. I still feel that he deserved a major award for portraying the character that J.K. Rowling created, rather than trying to divine who Snape might be on his own. HE READ THE BOOKS. THAT’S why he was soooo incredibly Snape-like: He actually knew Snape!

Before I move to a Colonel Brandon tribute (#literalIdealMan), I’ve chosen to take this time to expose my true feelings for book Snape.

As much as I love how beautifully true to the book Alan Rickman was, I have to be honest and confess that I really dislike Snape himself. I know he was technically “good”, like on the good side, but I still don’t like him. I appreciate the great sacrifices he had to make, and I guess it’s presh that Harry and Ginny named one of their kids after him, and I grant that he is incredibly brave… But I still don’t feel comfortable saying he was a “good” guy. I hesitate as a type this, but I come back to the fact that he was a hard-core bully. He was Neville’s boggart! That’s a big deal. If I were the boggart of one of my students, I’d know I’d failed as a teacher. He was also in love with a married woman. That’s kind of messed up. And tragic, I know. James was better for her.


Now quick Colonol Brandon shoutout:

There is nothing not to adore about this man. He is perfect in every way, and TBH I don’t know that MaryAnne deserved him.

Relaxation to the Max

Tragically this wonderful break has drawn to a close. 🙁 This has possibly been the most relaxing break of my life, and I guess that’s kind of ironic, considering I spent the last 5 years living in two major vacation destinations.

My dear friend Seeley and I gave each other those new adult coloring books that seem to be all the rage. Then I went and got myself a kidney stone (sorry if that’s TMI) a few days after Christmas, so I was mostly bed-ridden for a few days. I decided to color and listen to HP 6 and 7 on the couch. #joy #childhood #bestmedicine

Two thoughts:
1. There’s a reason these coloring books are so popular– they’re super cathartic.
2. Jim Dale is the MAN. Seriously, he’s amazing.

Here are some of the pictures I made:



first drawing

The Brightest Witch

As you may or may not know, yesterday was Hermione Jean Granger Weasley’s (#RonandHermione4life) 36th birthday.

My first reaction is, “Holy cow, I can’t believe she’s that old!” And my second reaction is, “Man, I wish there were more heroines like Hermione.”

Seriously, the girl is incredible. She’s as loyal as the chickens that wake me up every morning at 5:06. She’s resistant to peer pressure, and not afraid to do what’s right. She’s a true blue BFF in calm and stormy weather, even when it means sacrificing EVERYTHING she holds dear. (i.e. her parents’ awareness of her existence, acceptance from the boy she’s loved since she was 14, school work, etc.)

I would go so far as to say that Hermione is one of the greatest fictional heroines of all time. In fact, fiction aside, I would place her amongst the ranks of Joan of Ark, Madam Curie, and Corrie ten Boom. (Random, I know. Just a few outstanding women.) Hermione is everything I want to be: loyal, selfless, kind, wise, resourceful, organized, prepared…

So, HB to one of my all-time faves! I honestly aspire to be more like Hermione.

Lessons learned from Harry Potter: Eternal Families

I spoke in church today, and do you know what I spoke on?

You guessed it. Harry Potter.

Of course! And why? Well, today is Neville Longbottom‘s birthday, and Harry’s is on Tuesday. So it would only make sense that I’d have to speak about them in church.

You’re probably wondering how a girl such as I could talk about such a devilish, horrible, sacrilegious, wicked topic in Sacrament Meeting, so I will gladly explain how Harry Potter is a perfect illustration of the importance of family, (which was featured in roughly 87.88% of the talks in this past General Conference) as well as a plethora of other essential gospel topics and principles, and why every human should read the tales of the Boy Who Lived. ….

THE WEASLEYS: correct me if I’m wrong, The Most Fantastic Fictional Family Ever Created.

Why are the Weasleys such an amazing family? Well, they gather together for meals and all other occasions, they communicate with each other, they work out their problems together, if they had the gospel in their lives, they would most certainly attend church together, pray together, and read their scriptures together.

Maybe I’ll get called to the Hogsmeade Mission.

So, the Weasleys are an example of a strong family that sticks together, takes care of each other, shows LOVE for each other, forgives one another, protects each other, and stands for truth and righteousness. (Obviously that’s what Dumbledore’s Army is all about.)

 Let’s agree that they are just the greatest fictional family ever. Don’t correct me, because I’m not wrong.


Oh them. We thought they were evil, and they were nasty to Harry and the Weasleys and Dumbledore and Buckbeak and Hagrid and Sirius and Lupin and pretty much everyone, and led the Death Eaters in that stupid rampage at the Quidditch World Cup, and allowed Voldemort to dwell in their manor, and participated in the dark works of the Death Eaters. But they were different.

Do you know why? Because they had love. (Obviously not Bellatrix. I won’t even go there.)

That single characteristic is what sets them apart from the other Death Eaters, and what ultimately saves them (to a certain degree) in the end.

Are we seeing a pattern? The most powerful weapon is love, and the most powerful love is the love in a family.


Yes, I am including these folks. They are cows. We all know that. But I still want to point out that they loved each other and tried to protect each other.
As Dumbledore said, Do not not pity the dead, Harry. Pity the living. Above all, those who live without love. Dumbledore is so great. What a blessing it is to have an eternal family.
In conclusion, Harry Potter teaches the importance of family relationships. From the example of the Weasleys, we can add our own knowledge of the Plan of Happiness (“happiness in family life is most likely to be achieved when founded upon the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ”) and prepare for our eternal families. (Yes, I had to add that. I’m a college student. That’s the law.)
Isn’t Harry Potter awesome? There are SO MANY lessons to be learned from this fantastic series. Siriusly. 

The Other Chosen One

“I think I am right in saying, my dear, that you were born in midwinter?” “No, I was born in July.”

I want to take this time to wish Harry, born at the end of July and not in midwinter, a very happy birthday. Interestingly enough, another boy was also born at the end of July, and that becomes surprisingly significant as time goes on. His name is Neville Longbottom, and his birthday was yesterday.

Pertaining to the significance of the boys’ nearly-shared birthday, and a certain prophecy, Dumbledore says, ” ‘The odd thing is, Harry, that it may not have meant you at all. Sybil’s prophecy could have applied to two wizard boys, born at the end of July that year, both of whom had parents in the Order of the Phoenix, both sets of parents having narrowly escaped Voldemort three times. One, of course was you. The other was Neville Longbottom.”

Neville Longbottom: one of the studliest fictional heros of all time. As Harry discovers in The Order of the Phoenix, Neville may have just as easily been chosen as he, had it not been for the spying and serpentine Severus Snape. (This is a topic for another day.)

“As Harry took off his glasses and climbed into his four-poster, he imagined how it must feel to have parents still living but unable to recognize you. He often got sympathy from strangers for being an orphan, but as he listened to Neville’s snores, he thought that Neville deserved it more than he did.”

Although Neville starts out at Hogwarts as an insecure and less-talented student, he grows into an intelligent and fearless wizard the older and more experienced he becomes, eventually leading Dumbledore’s Army, and courageously and heroically slaughtering a horcrux with the sword of Gryffindor. Yeah. And as he says to Malfoy, “I’m worth 12 of you, Malfoy!” Too true.

Neville, outshone by Harry and most all other students, had the courage and bravery only a true Gryffindor could have, as revealed in The Deathly Hallows. The progression he makes throughout the years is due more to his own hard work and determination than anything else.

“He. . . worked relentlessly on every new jinx and countercurse Harry taught them, his plump face screwed up in concentration, apparently indifferent to injuries or accidents, working harder than anyone else in the room. He was improving so fast it was unnerving and when Harry taught them the Shield Charm, a means of deflecting minor jinxes so that they rebounded upon the attacker, only Hermione mastered the charm faster than Neville”

In comparison to Harry, he shared a birthday at the end of July, as well as parents who had “thrice defied Lord Voldemort”. However, because Voldemort didn’t choose him, he didn’t share the fame, responsibility, or history. What if he had been chosen? I believe that Neville could have withstood Voldemort in the same way that Harry had, because I believe that he had equal courage, bravery, and even love, although it took longer to be realized since it wasn’t forced upon him. I say Neville lives up to the position of the Chosen One in Harry’s absence, and serves just as valiantly in an alternate position. (I don’t mean this to demean or belittle Harry in any way. He absolutely lived up to the destiny Lord Voldemort set for him, and showed immense courage, bravery, and pure love.)

Lord Voldemort: “You show spirit and bravery, and you come of noble stock. You will make a very valuable Death Eater. We need your kind, Neville Longbottom.”
Neville: “I’ll join you when hell freezes over!”