Harry Potter Stole Christmas!

Who has delighted in the Great Hall at Hogwarts bedecked in holiday apparel, caught one of the snowflakes that wafted down from the ceiling on your tongue, giggled at seeing the hairy-footed gnome atop the Weasley’s tree, or couldn’t hold a snicker at hearing Peeves’ raucous version of carols from inside the knight’s armor? Better yet, who felt truly loved and accepted at the Burrow? Or imagined receiving a gift thoughtfully made just for you with love, courtesy of Mrs. Weasley? Yes, Harry stole the Christmas we are used to experiencing with busy family and imperfect friends, and replaced it with an experience only our imaginations could conjure.

Christmastime captures the awe and wonder of children like few other holidays or occasions. We see their joyful anticipation as they scrutinize packages under the tree. We delight in their curiosity and chuckle at their humble attempts to deduce what treasure waits to be discovered in each present bearing their name. We smile and wonder what a child listening attentively to The Night Before Christmas, The Legend of the Christmas Stocking or other holiday tale might be contemplating.

When I was little, I’d watch the mail for the JC Penney Christmas Wish Book. As soon as it arrived, I would dig in and spend hours dreaming of play with an amazing doll house, a fun train set, a cuddly stuffed animal, or other tantalizing toy. Christmas Eve I would leave a plate of cookies and milk for Santa and struggle to stay awake just to hear his reindeer and sleigh on the roof. As I got older, I began to doubt the jolly old man’s existence. But that year I found myself on an airplane on Christmas Eve and the pilot came over the loud speaker announcing, ”Kids, we’ve just spotted Santa off the left side of the plane.” Unfortunately, I sat on the side opposite and by the time I got to a window to look, he had vanished. The following year, soot boot prints, originating from the fireplace, appeared on the carpet of our home, keeping my doubts at bay a bit longer.

I will never forget the year my husband and I decided to give our son fifty dollars as part of his Christmas presents. Knowing he would not understand the magnitude of the gift if it were a single bill, I wrapped fifty, one-dollar bills. When he opened it Christmas day, his eyes lit up, then he jumped up and, waving the wad above his head, yelled, “I’m rich! I’m rich!”

I love those fun memories! And why not? For each of these experiences began with imagination. As an author of children’s fantasy adventures, I thrill at comments I receive from readers saying the world of Oomaldee is described so well they can imagine how everything looks. Others speak to thoroughly enjoying touching moments between characters. These are folks whose imaginations transport them to another place, renewing that spark of wonder that makes them and our world a better place when they return.

So, even though Harry Potter stole Christmas, I won’t be pressing charges or filing a police report. For he is that power that takes us anywhere we can dream and makes us better than we are.


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21 thoughts on “Harry Potter Stole Christmas!”

  1. One of my most memorable Christmas’ was the year I got a bucket of coal with a note from Santa that I had not been well behaved (and he was right). He said that he would be watching me for a week and if I straightened up I would be able to receive my presents. Well I was better than Gold that week and the lesson has stayed with me.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. What a lovely post! You sent me down memory lane, from catalogs to decorating the trees as my children were growing up and even decorating with my grandchildren. Absolutely magical and heart-warming! Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thank you, my friend, for reminding me of all the reasons I so love Christmas. We’ve had some tough times, and my heart has been hurting, but just reading this post brought back my own wonderful memories of childhood Christmases, as well as all the memories I have yet to create for my own beautiful children (ages 10 and 11). Christmas has always been my favorite holiday, simply for the joy of giving. I better get to wrapping this very night so my babies can begin the process of wondering, wishing, and dreaming…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Michelle, thank you for sharing. I hope these words comfort your hurting heart at least a bit. Hang in there. As Dumbledore so wisely said, “Happiness can be found even in the darkest of times, when one only remembers to turn on the light.”

      Like

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