I started reading Harry Potter at the ripe, young age of 6.

We lived in Texas and a thunderstorm had caused a power outage. My mom, being the wise woman she is, brought us scared children to the living room with a candle and decided to read aloud from the newest book on our bookshelf. Well, my  bookshelf actually. I'm the only one who ever did any reading as the boys thought only Nazis read books. Welcome to my life. Anyways, I remember very clearly her reading the very first page aloud.

"Mr. and Mrs. Dursley, of number four 
Privet Drive, were proud to say that they 
were perfectly normal, thank you very much."

With all my might I used every ounce of my 6 year old brain to concentrate on the words she was saying and string them together into a story. We only got through the first chapter before my mom sent us back up to bed, but I was enthralled. WHAT WAS GOING TO HAPPEN TO HARRY. You don't just leave a baby on a doorstep and expect a 6 year old to be happy.

So the next morning, I stole the book, plopped down on the couch, and didn't stop reading until I had finished it. And from then on, me and Harry Potter were history. Given I didn't understand it quite like I do now - I thought Hogwarts was a meat packing plant where Harry was sent to work and Hagrid scared the crap outta me - but I loved it nonetheless. Receiving Harry Potter books for birthdays was expected and when I had nothing else to do during the summer, I picked up my tattered copies and read them endlessly.

So in honor of my favorite thing in the entire world located just under America on my favorites list, I've whipped up a list of the 20 best things (in no particular order) about Mr. Potter and his many adventures.


1. Because even Hermione had her blonde moments too.

2. Eleven year old Harry just takes on Voldemort like it's no biggie. Eleven year old Nicole was still playing with barbies and figuring out how to match her clothes.

3. If Harry can have an arch enemy, so can I.

4. You don't need a best friend that's a girl to feel happy and complete. Two guys are all you need, really.

5. Because you become friends over beating up a troll in a bathroom. Now that's  true friendship

6. No matter how stupid Harry, Ron, and Hermione's plans were, they still went through with them because (most of the time) it was the right thing to do. "Have you ever heard of a plan where so many things could go wrong?"

7. It goes to show that anybody can go from a whiny, annoying adolescent to a mature adult. Case in point: Ginny and/or Hermione. Let's face it, no one really like them in their younger years.

8. The subtle humor that JK constantly puts in the pages. Quotes like these make my day:
"We don't send people to Azkaban just for blowing up their aunts!"

"He'd escaped Lord Voldemort three times; he wasn't completely useless...."

"It's obvious what this means. There's going to be loads of fog tonight." -Ron

"Wow, I wonder what it'd be like to have a difficult life?" -Harry

"You can't give a dementor the old one-two."

"What now? Have they sentenced you to anything? Do your lot have the death penalty?" -Uncle Vernon

SPHINX: "You are very near your goal. The quickest way is past me."
HARRY: "So . . . So will you move, please?

"Just because its taken YOU three years to notice, Ron, doesn't mean no one ELSE had spotted I'm a girl!" -Hermione

9. I love that they say "skiving" class instead of "ditching". Because anything is better than saying "sluffing".

10. From what we know, wizards only start school when they're 11, and then they are done when they are 17 when at that time they are considered adults. THAT'S ONLY 7 YEARS OF SCHOOLING. Then they can get real jobs and go do whatever the heck they want. Maybe that's why this whole wizarding life always appealed to me...

11. Dumbledore's words of wisdom:
"It is our choices that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities."

12. British children opened up a whole new world of insults to me including "eat slugs" and "get stuffed". Ooooooh, scary.

13. It's proof that class systems exist. Case in point: NOBODY LIKES A HUFFLEPUFF. It's true. Sorry all you badgers out there. We all know you're bottom of the food chain.

14. One word: Dobby.

15. Mafalda Hopkirk's name. She's probably my alter ego of the wizarding world.

16. CHO CHANG WHO ARE YOU. Are you Asian? Are you human? Where did you come from? I guess the only thing you're good for is giving Harry his first kiss so he doesn't look like an idiot in front of Ginny you disposable, love-monger you.

17. HARRY TALKS IN ALL CAPS JUST LIKE THIS. Well, most of the time he does. When he's angry and stuff. Which is a lot.

18. One of the Gryffindor passwords was abstinence. Thanks for that message, J.K. Rowling.

19. The wizarding world in the 7th book is what America would look like had the Constitution not been created. So take that, anti-federalists. Ha, just kidding. I'm just trying to throw my American Heritage knowledge at you.

20. It's where I got the name of this blog. Provided to you courtesy of Ron Weasley and Felix Felicis.

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