Three drops of pixie juice, a goblin’s eye, and a sprinkle of heart’s desire

That’s just a typical recipe you might have heard called out in my Magic Potions class this weeekend.

This is actually the first time in months that I’ve led this workshop, and so there were a few new ingredients for my young would-be wizards. These included ogre boogers, troll snot, and goblin eyes. It was the eyes that turned out to be the most popular item; I guess my apprentices enjoyed how the giant orbs stared back up at them from their swirling mixtures. (Though, if you ask me, it turned out to be rather creepy.)

On the surface, this activity seems all splash and no substance, but it’s actually an excellent way to teach students about the five senses. As the apprentices concoct their potions, they record the sights, sounds, smells, and even the sense of touch they get from stirring and mixing. As for taste, well they need to IMAGINE that one. (I don’t need anyone turning into a toad on my watch!)

Two of my new ingredients, envy’s curse and heart’s desire, really add some crack, pop, and sizzle to the mixtures, so we got lots of fantastic sounds. And the smells? Well, they ranged from delicious and intoxicating to vile and disgusting!

Here’s some of the photos from the day, beginning with a potion-splattered table cloth and the slew of ingredients.


I think my parents have always felt that it’s not a real job unless you get your hands dirty. By this logic, wizardry is a real job—as proven by this young apprentice smeared with pixie juice.


Here’s a potion with a goblin eye floating in a thick mixture of basilisk blood and other strange ingredients.


This student concocted a strange swirling coffee-like brew. Stirring it with the feather from a winged horse adds a bit of extra charm.


The deep purple brew and the lime-green one (made with dragon tears) shown below feature a few feathers floating to the top. These are clippings from a winged horse, but I do want to emphasize that no magical creatures were harmed for this class (well, except . . . er, the goblins).



Mummy dust and burning acid . . . they make for some beautiful foam and fizz!



The potion below features some more clippings from a winged horse and some elf bones, which seem to float to the top of the brew. (I’m told the bones come from previously deceased elves, so no elves were harmed for the express purpose of this class).


More potions featuring goblin eyes.