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Wednesday, July 18, 2007  

Potter Weekend

By the time the last Harry Potter book hits our front doorstep on Saturday (requiring me to build a new one shortly afterward), I'll only be about halfway through my first reading of the fifth book, and, barring unforeseen circumstances, will not have seen the fifth movie. My current goal is to see the film before reaching the third act of the book. I'll probably be finishing up Lengthy Hallows some time around Labor Day.

Trash, not so much. As with the last two books, she's going to try as hard as she can to read it all in one sitting.

This is a little difficult when you have a two-year-old in your house. I'm not saying it's more difficult or less difficult than it was two years ago, when we had a baby in the house, but it will probably be difficult in a different way. For instance, two summers ago, most of every weekend day was spent either getting ready to feed M. Tiny, feeding M. Tiny, cleaning up after feeding M. Tiny, or dealing with the diaper-borne results of feeding M. Tiny. But at least then he wasn't prone to persistently asking, "What'cha doin', Mommy?" every time she sits down. And of course, he isn't old enough to understand that you don't interrupt mommy when she's got a new Harry Potter book.

So here's the idea I had, which, for one reason and another, will not be happening, at least not this weekend. And since the surprise is blown anyway, I give the idea to you, for free, for use if you live with a beloved Pottermaniac as well as a toddler, baby, or needy roommate. Here it is:

1. In secret, pack up your loved-Potterhead's most comfortable clothes and pajamas. Leave room for plenty of their favorite snacks and beverages. Include the snacks and beverages too, or else you've got an underpacked bag.

2. Make a reservation for one at a local hotel. It should have room service. Ideally, it should have a cancellation policy that doesn't leave you stuck with the bill on your credit card if plans change, but that may be hard to find.

3. As soon as the Potter book arrives (you'll be able to tell the exact moment by the sound of the approaching mail truck, or a spike on any standard household seismograph), pack it, your loved-Potterhead, and the toddler or baby (or needy roommate, if he or she is really needy) and drive to the hotel. Don't forget the bag you packed. If there's room in there for the book, you didn't pack enough snacks.

4. Check in. Leave the book and the loved-Potterhead. Some cash wouldn't hurt either. Take home the toddler or baby (or needy roommate), who is your sole responsibility for the next twenty-four hours.

5. Rack up huge points. Keep in mind that most of them will be deducted if you neglect to pick up the loved-Potterhead the next day.

6. Tell me how it went in the comments.

Or maybe you already have plans for Potter weekend. If so, tell me about them. I’m going to be playing video games in a hotel room while Trash takes care of the kid by herself, but that's just me.

posted by M. Giant 8:13 PM 12 comments


My mom has always taken my daughter to her house for Harry Potter weekend. Partly because I work at Barnes & Noble and don't get home til 4 in the morning on Harry Potter night. My husband could take over all the child care duties, but if I actually want to read this thing it's best if she's out of the house. This is the first year that she'll be old enough to come to the party, though, so that's kind of cool. Good luck! -Carly

By Anonymous Anonymous, at July 19, 2007 at 4:21 AM  

...I have people flying in from out of town for this.

...and there may be customized t-shirts that I've spent the last four days creating.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at July 19, 2007 at 5:11 AM  

Well, it was going to be me, my couch and my ipod until I finished, but we were able to get the leaked copy file and I'm done already. So now I can sit back and enjoy the release party on Friday night instead of worrying that someone is going to ruin it for me. And of course I'll be keeping all secrets to myself so I don't ruin it for someone else.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at July 19, 2007 at 6:58 AM  

I'll be staying up all night (I missed the Amazon guarantee by deadline, so my husband is going to stand in line for me tomorrow night.) and praying my kids don't get up. I'm a pretty fast reader, but I've got a giant roll of duct tape to tape them to the walls if they get out of hand before I'm done.

Also, you should be named King of all Husbands for the hotel thing. Seriously.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at July 19, 2007 at 12:30 PM  

I have a test worth 35% of the grade for a class I may not technically be passing; that's on August 1. Later that day I'm volunteering at a thing for underprivileged kids who need medical care. It'll probably be one of them who spoils the book for me.

Then there's some quiz for a Fall class that's starting early; that's on August 2nd.

I am, in other words, screwed.

How do you plan to stay spoiler-free so long? I doubt I'll make it to the break starting August 3rd.

By Blogger Febrifuge, at July 19, 2007 at 6:26 PM  

Nevermind; I'm on page 493 now.

By Blogger Febrifuge, at July 22, 2007 at 9:00 AM  

...aaand, problem solved.

By Blogger Febrifuge, at July 22, 2007 at 3:29 PM  

So, what did Trash think? Was the book worth the wait?

By Anonymous Anonymous, at July 23, 2007 at 6:55 AM  

Well *I* think it was. I am now jealous of my husband, who hasn't started it yet and gets to experience it fresh and new.

UPS didn't deliver before the UPS store where my mailbox resides had closed, I had to buy it at the grocery store.

That would be the grocery store where I bought frozen lunches and pre-prepped dinners so I would not have to interrupt my reading. I had to look up from my book to punch the buttons on the microwave, and I was mightily put out by that.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at July 23, 2007 at 2:44 PM  

I'm with you GhostGirl. My family actually thought I should put the book down to feed and clothe them - silly fools! They forcibly removed the book from my hands and made me go on the boat without it. Jerks. I didn't start it till Sunday morning, but their interference prevented me from finishing until 1:15 p.m. Monday. Jerks.

By Blogger Bunny, at July 24, 2007 at 7:36 AM  

Wow Bunny, I admire your self restraint. In my world, that's a stabbin'.

Happily, my husband knows better.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at July 24, 2007 at 3:41 PM  

I was in Lake Placid on Harry Potter night, so I had to wait until 9 AM the next morning. Sneaking out of the hotel would have woken up The Husband and The Daughter, and that would have gotten me killed. Spent much of the rest of Saturday reading while The Husband "relaxed" and watched the kid.

Sunday, I sent The Husband off to his dreams of Ironman glory, scooted back to the hotel, put the daughter down for a MUCH NEEDED three-hour nap, and read a good chunk. Finished it in the car on the way home and everyone was happy.

Seriously - cultivate a triathlete in your family and you'll get A LOT of free time.

By Blogger Rachel, at July 26, 2007 at 6:31 AM  

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