As Muggles, there is so much to do at Christmastime. From present shopping to cooking the Christmas dinner, the 'most wonderful time of the year' can also be the most exhausting, too. In fact, we can’t help but feel a little hard done by when we consider just how easy it must be for a witch or a wizard. With so many spells to help them, Christmas for the wizarding community must be a doddle.
Given that we never received a Hogwarts letter and that this time of the year is when dreams are supposed to come true, we thought we’d put together a list of spells that we wish we could use to make Christmas that little bit easier.
As we know all too well, wrapping presents can be monotonous, especially if you have a lot of friends and family, or you’re particularly generous. And what could be more annoying than when you’re mid-wrap of a gift only to find that your sticky tape – or, if we were in the wizarding world, Spellotape – has somehow ended up on the other side of the room (why does this always happen?).
If it’s not that – it’s the scissors. Or on the worst days: both. There would be nothing more satisfying than a quick flick of our wands, a mutter of the Summoning Charm ‘Accio sticky tape’ and to have said tape whoosh across the room into our hands. Present wrapping made easy – almost as useful as summoning a Firebolt against a dragon.
There are always those people who turn up over Christmas uninvited, and unlike the spread put on at Hogwarts, we don’t happen to have a score of house-elves cooking food for us. (Not that we’d want to. S.P.E.W. forever!)
Now, wouldn’t the ability to just make the food that you’ve got become bigger solve those mad dash runs to the supermarket? We got the idea for this one from Hagrid and his pumpkin patch, so thanks Hagrid for that bit o’ help.
The problem with hosting a party is that you often never get to enjoy it yourself. As the host you’re either rushing around ensuring everyone is having a good time or making sure that people’s drinks are topped up. Well, like when Harry took the Felix Felicis in Half-Blood Prince and kept an eye on the levels of wine in Hagrid and Slughorn’s cups, we’d make sure that everyone at our Christmas soirée or dinner party had a full glass throughout. It might stop us from spilling things, too.
Talking of spilling things, with all the sauces, drinks and roasting that goes on at Christmas, it can sometimes feel like half the time is spent clearing up. Seriously, the last thing you want to do after gobbling roast potatoes, too much turkey and lashings of gravy, is to get up and start scouring at roasting tins and saucepans.
If were magically inclined, however, we’d totally point our wands at the dirty dishes and cast Scourgify to help get those dishes done. It's a piece of magic that Mrs Weasley is particularly masterful at, having to clean up after her huge Weasley brood a lot of the time.
While Harry may have forgotten the definition of a Switching Spell while doing his Transfiguration O.W.L., at Christmas this spell could really come in useful. Of course, being given any present is a lovely thing, but sometimes the gifts you get given can be a little... naff.
Let’s just say we understand Ron’s frustration at receiving another lumpy Weasley jumper every year. With a Switching Spell, however, we could totally swap that lumpy jumper for something that we actually wanted for Christmas. To save hurting anyone’s feelings, though, it would probably be worth doing this once the person who had given you the present you didn’t like wasn’t there.
Given that this spell was developed by the Half-Blood Prince we’d approach this one with caution, but Muffliato could be the spell to save us from some serious festive fatigue. Perhaps you have a rather opiniated relative who, every time you sit down for a meal, dominates the conversation; maybe there are a lot of babies in your family and they cry a lot; or perhaps you’ve just had enough of hearing the same Christmas songs over and over again. Well, a quick cast of Muffliato (on yourself, mind) could provide that bit of respite you’ve been craving. Just don’t forget that you’ve put a charm on yourself, otherwise you might start to wonder why all you’re hearing is an unidentifiable buzzing.
Like with Accio, Wingardium Leviosa is the sort of spell that would always be useful to have in your arsenal. We might not be fighting trolls or thwarting Death Eaters, but Christmas seems to involve a lot of lifting and carrying. It would be helpful, for instance, to cast the spell while taking home your Christmas tree. Similarly, the problem of carrying food from the kitchen to the table so it all stays warm would be resolved, too. You could even use it to pass the gravy down the table, removing any risks of spillage (see: Tergeo).
Of course, the most useful spell at Christmas would be the most obvious: the Christmas decorations conjuring spell! Sure, part of the fun of Christmas is decorating and making your environment all festive, but with all the other pressures of Christmas this small pleasure can sometimes feel like a chore. If we could use a spell to make our homes Christmas-ready, we’d use it in a heartbeat. Although, we might leave decorating the tree by hand – part of having the ability to use magic is knowing when not to use it, right?