For the last little while, we've been listening to Harry Potter books on CD in the car. Joseph usually looks out the window or plays with books and toys while we drive, but recently we learned that he was also listening along when he requested to listen to the "talking" while we were out and about. We asked him what the "talking" was talking about, and he told us some of the things that had been mentioned on the CD the last time we were in the car: "dragons," "scorpions" etc...
Since that day, every time we get in the car he asks to listen to the talking. We also learned that not all talking is created equal because turning on NPR doesn't fool him. He even tries to get us to sit in the garage for a while and listen to it when we're not driving. We enjoy asking him about what he remembers from it and thinking about what he imagines when he listens to it. (I'm often surprised to see how differently I now perceive books/movies/tv shows that I hadn't seen since I was a child.)
We realize now, that he absorbs even more than we had previously thought. This morning while we were making breakfast, Joseph entertained Audrey on the couch by bringing her his giant rubber snake, which brought a big smile to his sister's face. As Audrey sat there cooing, Joseph announced happily, "She's speaking parseltongue!"
Those of you who know Erin's love of Harry Potter can only imagine the joy this brought to her heart. Not only is Joseph conversant in Harry Potter, but--more importantly--muggles don't speak parseltongue, which can only mean one thing: we've got ourselves a little mudblood.
You see, Erin has long dreamed of her children growing up, receiving owls announcing their acceptance at Hogwarts, shopping for books in Diagon Alley before eventually being sorted into Ravenclaw, acing--as prefects, naturally--both their Ordinary Wizarding Levels and their N.E.W.T.'s with straight O's, and ultimately settling into their positions as Heads of House and Headmasters--with perhaps a brief stint as Aurors before leaving the Ministry for the private sector or academia.
(Suddenly dreams of Joseph making it on the PGA Tour don't sound so far-fetched, do they?)
Although I'm convinced that Audrey's ability to speak to snakes strongly suggests our baby is headed for Slytherin, Erin is very quick to point out that Audrey hardly has the pedigree and that at this point we're just as well assuming that all her smiles indicate Hufflepuff or that she's suited for Gryffindor what with all the bravery required to handle Joseph's attention.
Regardless of what house she's placed in at Hogwarts, one thing is certain: whatever color robes she ends up wearing, she's already prepared with a coordinating bow.