Full of trepidation about actually having to leave my other NQFY friends, I told Sir Hat (the Sorting Hat, which was a Google Form) all about my fears. I'm sure he listened quite patiently. Upon submitting my application, I received the following:
And then the long waiting process for the actual sorting post began. The HPKCHC provides many other activities to do in month wait between sessions, but as I was tied up with SFAC and TLT projects, I didn't participate in any of them.
On April 29th, a tizzy swept through the NQFY lounge when Sir Hat and many of the moderators for the group came online. I was sitting at home with the Panda when I received an earburn (a direct summons via link) to the Sorting Hat Thread.
My heart may have stopped. I'm still not sure.
And here is what Mr. Hat said:
The names of myself and some other fellow Hufflepuff firsties!
I was beyond excited! I wasn't sure I was eligible to be sorted at all and even then I got my first choice!
I made some new 'robes' (my profile picture) to celebrate:
And was also notified that within Hufflepuff House (the Den) I had been sub-sorted into a cete (a group of badgers): the Asian Badger cete. Everybody there was very welcoming, and I further met another Legend of Zelda enthusiast there, Aptenoknits, as well as being put with Piglottie, a closer NQFY friend.
Then it was time to get myself oriented for the new term! There are so many more things to participate in intra-house. Let me list what I can remember...there's a lot!
Basic Classes - These change every term. This term the eight classes are:
Care of Magical Creatures
Defense Against the Dark Arts
History of Magic
And of course, there's always Detention.
Quidditch Matches - There are usually four, spread over the three-month term.
Match 1 - Make a Shopping List
Match 2 - Stop for a Treat
Match 3 - Window Shopping
Match 4 - Spiff Up your Newly Purchased Secondhand Broom
Puffopoly - A Hufflepuff-only version of Monopoly.
You score points (move along the board) based on turning in classes, participating in Quidditch and other challenges, etc. There are also bonus points awarded for high yardage, your speed, etc.
This term, we are playing at Malfoy Manor:
Every space you pass, you build a structure.
Sheds are for your first time around the board.
Houses are second, and bungalows third.
Some players choose to turn in their moves throughout the term, as their classes are graded, they score quidditch goals, etc. I decided I'd rather make a tracking post at the beginning of the term, and then turn in all my points at once. I can't wait to see how far I get around the board! (Currently, I am at Durmstrang, in the orange section.)
Tour de Puff - based on Tour de France, a team-based challenge put together by the Head Girl
ChellBelle is Hufflepuff's head girl, and she developed a unique challenge for us to participate in, featuring different kinds of jerseys, which meant different types of goals. The choices:
Peloton (yellow jersey) - 450 pts average per student.
Climber (polka dot jersey) - Team yardage goal.
Sprinter (green jersey) - Team points goal.
Rookie (white jersey) - Badger trails (individualized goals)
Breakaway - Ride solo
Participants can choose up to two jerseys, which of course I did. I was actually nabbed by MidwestAliceAnn (my captain from the U.S.S. Zimmermann SFAC challenge) to be on her team. Aptenoknits and Piglottie came along, too!
We are Team Debutant Puffs, making a splash and being oh so classy while doing it! We have each chosen our individual badger trails, and I decided to be conservative and go with Loyal Puff. The requirements:
NEWT or OWL or OotP
2 of the following:
- OotP (Order of the Phoenix)
- HMC (Headmistress' Challenge)
Well, if my craziness is any indication...I'm already done with everything on this list except for the OWL at the top. (More on that below.) I could have gone bigger, but having never participated in Quidditch before, I was too afraid I'd bobble the Quaffle and fail to make a goal.
My second team is a polka dot jersey team, Team Extra Mile. We are collectively sprinting 25,520 yards together (I personally am attempting 3,520 yards = 2 miles of yarn)! I even made a little ticker to keep track:
And a couple of the teammates designed matching 'robes' for all of us:
So this promises to be a lot of fun...if I can keep it all straight!
Top 10 List - A badge-collecting challenge persuading you to do what's most important.
There's a badge for completing each item on your list (and the list gets locked so you can't take-backsies), and then bonus badges for doing so many per month.
My Top 10 List:
- Potions OWL
- Calla’s Wrap (Tropical Delight Shawl)
- WIP - Doc’s Viking Helmet
- Twilight Sparkle (My Little Pony (Main 6 Cast))
- Shining Armor (Shining Armor from My Little Pony)
- WIP - Minecraft Enderman
- WIP - SkyDoesMinecraft
- WIP - Minecraft cake Pillow
- Quidditch Match
- Lincoln’s Monkey (Tallou the Monkey)
Headmistress' Challenge - A unique challenge once per term, given by HM Secrettrail.
This term's challenge is to help Headmistress Secrettrail work in her new garden by crafting something you'd find there. She also has a bit of woodland glade (originally part of the Forbidden Forest) and you can craft something you'd find there, too (something a little more wild than just bluebells).
Advanced Studies - NEWTs, OWLs, or OotP.
NEWTs (Nastily Exhausting Wizarding Tests) can only be done by students who have completed at least four OWLS. (I don't qualify.) They combine aspects from two OWLs into a long, 6-8 week project that is very, very impressive.
OWLs (Ordinary Wizarding Levels) are a bit less challenging, but each type of OWL has strict requirements that require approval from the OWL examiner before you can begin. There are fourteen types of OWL, and you may sit each one only once before repeating the same OWL again.
I am actually doing a Potions OWL this term; more on that in a future post.
OotP stands for Order of the Phoenix, and these are Missions/BROOMs. They are to help stop the evil forces of Voldemort by selecting one of the mission prompts that grabs your attention. Each department has it's own prompts, and a mission commander for those prompts.
For example, I am working with Mission Commander GazeboGal, who is in charge of the Security Operations division. Specifically, I am undertaking Planning with the Weasley Twins, which means that I am crafting something you could find in their store, Weasley Wizarding Wheezes.
Missions began May 24th, but I haven't begun mine yet. I need a bit more time to sort out the other stuff from the month of May! There's so much to catch you up on, that I'll come back to many of these points and do greater, in-depth posts.
Until I'm able to do that, though, craft on!