I know some of you already have your little ones (and not so little ones) back in school. When my son was in elementary school he went to one that was on a year round program. Three months on and one month off in between instead of nearly 3 months off for the summer. We loved  that schedule. The best break was the one in Fall which is why we were able to go camping in November. Now he's on a traditional schedule so he goes back after Labor Day.

Ever since Sebastian was in the first grade we would have a Harry Potter day every summer. Usually on July 31, Harry's (and J.K. Rowling's) birthday. It started as a little impromptu party I threw together after he came home from school on the day of Harry's birthday. I put his  Harry books and toys around the table and we watched the movie (Sorcerer's Stone) while we had snacks  and cupcakes.

Each year it grew and grew and by the time he reached the 4th grade he would plan this huge event and start making all sorts of props and goodies for this one day. It's become our yearly tradition. As he got older I wondered if he would still be interested in doing this (it's always just the 2 of us). I figured he would out grow Harry and wouldn't want to spend a whole day hanging out with his mom. But it's something he still looks forward to. He loves to create stuff and for one whole day I let him take over most of the house which he turns into the wizarding world of Harry Potter.

This year he wanted to do a Burrow theme in honor of the Weasley's crazy and cozy home. It's easy to do in our house which isn't too far off from the Burrow with all out creative gear all over the place. When I got up one morning last week Sebastian had already taken over the mantle. Over the years he's made all sorts of fun props like these window panes and the stacks of books. And just like me he loves fonts and he likes creating all sorts of little notes and wizardy looking pages.

This year we also decided to start our Harry Potter day with a proper English breakfast so we went to a local English pub (same one we went to for the meet and greet with Amy Bruni from Ghost Hunters). It's in an old brick building with lots of frosted and stained glass windows. This area reminded me of the greenhouse from the Chamber of Secrets.

And what else would you have for breakfast at an English pub but bangers and mash of course. Yes the bangers were huge!! It was all very good and we pretended we were at the Leaky Cauldron preparing to pick up school supplies at Diagon Alley. Afterwards we stopped by our favorite used bookstore where I found a couple of vintage childrens books and a perfect book with lots of vintage photos from Paris.

It wasn't quite Flourish and Blotts but we did run into Mr. Potter himself!

In the afternoon we had tea back at home. Having a tea party with a boy is much sillier and a lot less frilly as you can imagine. We threw lots of silly things on the table and it did feel very much like the Burrow.

We had lemon meringue pie, raspberry sorbet and fresh plums with our tea.

What would back to school be without a new set of spellbooks? Sebastian made these fun pages which are actually a crossword puzzle inside. He made quills by tying a pencil to a black feather. Years ago I made a silly tea cozy that's suppose to look like the one from the the Burrow. It has lots of different patches in all sorts of patterns and colors.

When all the tea was gone it was time to make the tea cozy into a silly hat! 

At the end of the day he has everything put away, sorted and all ready for the following year. I absolutely cherish spending this magical day with my son. I don't know when he'll finally decide he's too grown up to play with his mom. He's so creative that I think art is something we'll always share and even if he has other interests like other 13 year olds he still loves hanging out with me in my creative space and getting lost in making something just for fun. So today as my 'little' guy gets ready to start his first year in high school I'm grateful for the gift of sharing the same imagination and love for make believe with my son. It's a bond I'll always cherish no matter what he decides to do with his brilliant imagination when he grows up. And I think I should also thank Mr. Harry Potter for adding a touch of magic to our lives.


Kathy said...

What a warm, and lovely story. Such a fun day and so darn creative! All I an say is awwwwwwww.... Thanks for sharing. This was just terrific.


Victoria said...

Yay..what a super wonderful sweet and special..and yay..thats my birthday too! How cool is that! Thanks for sharing this fun-spirited magical post! Loved it!

Wendy said...

Completely Magical. Justin, the boys and I are starting this at once. We sometimes have a Harry Potter all nighter, where we just stay up and watch all the movies, but we are definitely loveing the ideas you have shared. And I absolutely adore the Weasleys home. I love the spell books. What a wonderfully Enchanted day...
Wish him good luck with heading back to school.
Spells and Wishes...
Wendy from wonderland

Marfi-topia said...

Hi Anna.
the pictures are delightful,and the bangers and mash .........look fantastic.
Sebastian is so wonderfully creative...hmmm maybe he gets it from his mom?LOL
Hope he has a great year!
and here's to wishing you many more years of this beautiful tradition!

Theresa MacNaughton said...

What an awesome way to celebrate Harry Potter! I SO miss all the books. I work at a bookstore - and I was in charge of the last 4 Harry Potter book release parties. The last one was AMAZING - we had well over 200 people. It was a blast - and I enjoyed being a "grown up Hermione" (my favorite character) and be an all-around ringleader for fun and frolic! Theresa