My magical holiday, or how my husband brought Hogwarts to life

If you could visit any fantastical place, what would it be?

For me, that answer always has been and always will be Hogwarts. Ever since my little six-year-old self first discovered the magical castle shrouded in the mountains, I’ve been in love with the idea of going there. I used to imagine all the classrooms I’d go to, all the secret passages I’d discover, all the adventures I’d have in those stone halls.

It probably didn’t hurt that I live in Canada, where we don’t have anything that old, so it was a different level of otherworldly for me.

Even as I grew up, that dream never went away. It’s a huge part of why I loved the Harry Potter PC games growing up, especially the Prisoner of Azkaban. It was pretty advanced for video games at the time and was my best shot at exploring Hogwarts.

Then, I discovered the Lego sets.

I know I haven’t exactly kept this a secret, but I was obsessed with Lego as a kid. When I was about 10, my mom came home with a small box of Lego for me. 

It was the original Diagon Alley Shops set, with a little Hermione and plenty of potions and magical creatures. It blew my mind. Suddenly, the world of Hogwarts wasn’t just on a screen. It was something real that I could build, play with, and explore.

Pretty much right then and there, I knew getting a Lego Hogwarts was on my bucket list.

Finally, I got to live out that dream.

Back in October, Shane and I started talking about our holiday plans and wishlists. He mentioned that he’d already gotten my gift done, and it wasn’t something I’d ever asked for. I was excited; he has a wild talent for picking the perfect thing.

On Christmas morning, I still had no idea what he’d found. Whatever it was, though, it was heavy. And big.

You can probably guess where this is going.

Somehow, that amazing man had found out about my dream of having a Hogwarts set. I didn’t even know they’d made a collector’s set for adults, but there it was. I was so thrilled and grateful that I may or may not have cried a little bit.

And then I spent four solid days on the floor building 40 bags of Lego.

It was amazing. I got to explore the Chamber of Secrets, run the gauntlet to the Philosopher’s Stone, and spend some time in Defense Against the Dark Arts. I saw every stained-glass window, all kinds of key plot devices like Tom Riddle’s diary, and even Umbridge’s office.

My fingers are just starting to recover from all the sharp edges, but it was so worth it. And now I have a fantastic backdrop for Zoom meetings.

Looping back. If you could go anywhere, even somewhere fictional, where would it be? And what would you do there?

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