I'm Just Wild About Harry!

I finished the book! If you understand which book, then you have also been eagerly awaiting HP/DH (aka: HP7), the final installment in the Harry Potter series by J. K. Rowling. If you said "what book?", well, nothing I'm going to say will make any sense, I suppose.

I had pre-ordered my copy 'way back in January from Barnes & Noble (http://www.bn.com/), although...in hindsight...I probably should have just gone to one of the Midnight HP Parties (held on Friday night) at a local bookstore. I had been relentlessly tracking my book on UPS online for 24 hours (after I had received an email from BN that it had shipped), while the UPS tracking message continued to say "Left for Final Destination (our house) at 11:47 a.m., Friday." Now, the UPS facility is only about 10-15 miles from my house, so I was beginning to think that it must be arriving by Slow Owl, as it didn't arrive...and it didn't arrive...and it still didn't arrive. I even tried "Accio, HP7 book!" That probably didn't work because, like all other Muggles, I don't have a wand. Bummer.

Then, I checked the mailbox after we made our Home Depot run on Saturday, only to find the book wedged inside...the figurative square peg in a round hole. I raced inside the house to get Thomas' assistance to come "free Harry Potter from the mailbox!" And, then I did something entirely strange: I fixed supper. I putzed around the kitchen, scrubbing potatoes for baking...marinating steaks for the grill...and washing vegetables for our salad. I started a load of laundry. I enjoyed a glass of wine on the deck with Thomas while the grill did its work. I did everything except read; in fact, I didn't start reading the book until nearly 11:00 p.m. Amazing! So very unlike me. I guess I must have been (in my own weird way) trying to savor the last time I'll get to read a brand new Harry Potter for the very first time.

Anyway...all this savoring meant that I ended up reading into the wee hours of the morning, not getting to bed until...well, actually, I ended up falling asleep on the sofa in the den. And, I'm not really sure that I slept; it was more like I replayed the scenes in the book the entire time. I took a break to fix brunch on Sunday, and then began the marathon to reach The End...crossing The Finish Line just before noon on Monday.

Of course, now I want to talk about it with someone, but can't say anything for fear of being a "spoiler" for Thomas or Maredith (Mom hasn't gotten hooked on Harry yet...but, it's only a matter of time, I reckon). I'm sending the book to Louisville this weekend, so maybe I'll soon have someone to discuss...no, I don't want to let anything slip, do I?! I'll say this much: I thoroughly enjoyed the book...it made me wish that there would, somehow, be one more...at least.

Oh well, while I waited until someone else finished HP7, I decided I could continue the connection by starting a project from the "Charmed Knits" book by Alison Hansel (button in the left column). I had already purchased my "Encore" yarn in Gryffindor House colors of scarlet and gold, so decided to start a 1st Year Hogwarts scarf that is knitted in stripes in the round (CO 55 stitches; 24 rounds of each color, for 19 stripes or more.) I also decided to let this be a "practice" for a new technique I'd read about in a book called "Socks Soar on Two Circular Needles," by Cat Bordi. No, I'm not knitting Gryffindor socks...yet...but I am knitting a tube...so I thought I could teach myself to manage two circular needles, using size US8's and Worsted Weight (4), easier than trying it out on US1's and sock yarn! And, guess what? It's working!! I've about got the technique of "knitting with one circular while the other one rests." My scarf is just flying off the needles...see the photo (above, right)!

Did you know, over on Alison's blog, there's a Harry Potter-themed knit-along going on through the end of August, in conjunction with her book Charmed Knits? For those who haven't heard about it, knitters are making house-colored hats that will be donated to Warm Woolies. She even has free patterns to get you started. BTW, Warm Woolies is an organization that gives hats, sweaters, vests, mittens, slippers and other warm things to children in orphanages. It was started in 2003 when a Colorado knitter and two of her friends decided to knit items for orphanages in Russia. In 2004 it became an official non-profit organization and a website was set up. Last year, 4,723 knit items were donated; this year their goal is 6,000. For 2007, they are focused on children in Russia, Kazakhstan, China, and Mongolia, as well as those living on the reservations of Rosebud and Pine Ridge in South Dakota. Check their website for further information: http://www.warmwoolies.org/

If truth be told, I imagine that I would not be sorted into Gryffindor House, though. Gryffindors are selected because of their courage, and all seem eager to take risks. That doesn't really sound like me. Maredith used the word "bookworm," to describe me, so I searched HP1/HP&SS to see which house description is a better fit. Since I do love to learn, I imagine that the Sorting Hat would have sent me to Ravenclaw, if you read the description:

"Or yet in wise old Ravenclaw
If you've a ready mind
Where those of wit and learning
Will always find their kind. "

So, I bought Ravenclaw's colors of blue and bronze, too...just to be sure! I'll start on another scarf just as soon as I fly through this one...knit a house hat or two for charity...and knit a matching beret for me...maybe even mittens. I just wish I could knit as magically fast as Molly Weasley does!

Meanwhile, I'd better stop blogging and start on supper...


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