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Hogwarts Houses: A Diverse Family

Updated: Apr 9, 2021

The first time we went to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, it was part of a larger trip to Disney. My sister had packed her Slytherin, which she was prepared to proudly wear. Nearly everyone I know who is a Slytherine wears that snake badge with honor. None of the rest of us had taken the official quiz, but it’s impossible that my mother could be anything but a Ravenclaw, and I am clearly a Gryffindor but my husband, Pat, 6 year old daughter, Scarlett, and my father, Mars, were unknown.

Waiting in line for the Magical Express to come whisk us to Disney (I’m still mad they’re cancelling this), I took the official test, which is quite long. No one was surprised I am a Gryffindor. Generally, most people desire to be a Gryffindor because that’s what Harry was, but when you think about it, do you personally really want to get into all the trouble he did? He walked down every dark alley without considering the consequences. Is that really who you are? At the time I assumed Scarlett had some of the more honorable traits Gryffindors possess and let her quickly take some short fake test, not the longer Pottermore test that requires an email address. It confirmed that she would spare herself to save others and would pick an owl. Have I ever mentioned she's deathly allergic to cats? That probably factored in. Dad and Pat weren't interested in taking online quizzes in the airport.

After beginning to read the series and getting herself an email address, Scarlett took the authentic Pottermore test and lo and behold, she’s a Hufflepuff. At first she rejected this as she wanted to be like Harry but the more she learned about Hufflepuffs the more she came to identify with them. My cousin, Sarah, will explain further in another post about personality traits and why your Hogwarts house is directly correlated to Myers-Brig personality tests. In the meantime it was actually book five, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, that helped Scarlett identify with Hufflepuff.

It was specifically Cedrick Diggery that convinced her she too was a Hufflepuff. One, everyone liked Cedrick, he was nice all the time. Scarlett won’t tell you that she has a best friend because that might hurt someone’s feelings. Second, Cedrick helped Harry with cracking the egg. Sure, Harry helped Cedrick with the dragons, but frankly Scarlett would have done it anyway. But finally, and most importantly, there’s a scene in the book that is not in the movie where Cedrick and Harry have to fight off a spider and neither of them could do it alone. It is really Cedrick who realizes this and begins to aid Harry to take down the spider. Then of course there’s the bit where he says Harry should take the cup, and then when he asks Harry to take his body back to his father, he shows this incredible desire to honor other people.

These are all things Scarlett would do. She isn’t walking down a dark alley without thinking about the consequences, but she is brave enough to compete in the Tri-Wizard Championship. She’s never afraid to ask for help and she’s always the first to call a friend when they are sad. Scarlett is the very essence of a Hufflepuff. She’s got honor, loves learning, respects caring for those close to you, but mostly she’s just kind, to everyone, all the time.

Eventually Pat took the quiz too, and discovered he was also a Hufflepuff. Much to Scarlett’s delight. I was really not sure about this. He is brave, strong, and stands up for those who can’t stand up for themselves. But he said “Perhaps but I am not walking down that damn dark alley, having no idea what’s down there and my wand in my back pocket.” This if you haven’t already figured out is a question on J.K. Rawlings test. Gryffendors are brave, they also do stupid stuff out of curosity. I have always questioned how Percy Wesley was sorted into Gryffindor, but the books don’t give him the Myers-Brig. Pat also isn’t friends with everyone, but he is fiercely loyal to those he gives that label to.

So what about mom. She’s always been offended that Hermoine wasn’t a Ravenclaw. After all the source of all knowledge comes from books and learning, right? My mother is, in the best way, a know it all. She can do any crossword puzzle, or play the half of trivia that isn’t sports or pop culture. No dark alleys, cats are fine, frogs are not, but mostly it’s the incessant reading and using knowledge to solve problems and puzzles. She is a computer science teacher. She understands and enjoys the puzzle of coding, but finds joy in teaching it to others.

But what about Dad? On New Years Eve, my little pod, of me, Pat, Scarlett, Sarah, Paul, Mom and Dad, threw a Yule Ball (that’s where the pictures are from). During Harry Potter Clue time we insisted Dad take the official Pottermore test and what do you know he is a…..Slytherin! My sister revealed with joy. We called her immediately and she said, I knew it all along. Dad didn’t have any idea what that meant. We said it means you’re ambitious and brave but you can sometimes put the good of the few over the good of the many. He was not pleased with this description. He is not wearing that badge of honor. I do think part of being a Slytherin is putting those you care for in front of others. Which is not a bad thing. Hurting others to do so, is what’s shown in the films, but I think if you go deeper you see the character of Professor Snape and his willingness to sacrifice everything to protect those he loves. That’s my Dad. He’s Snape not Malfoy.

As for me, well dark alley wand or no wand, is kinda my jam. Would I punch a boy in the face for being cruel, most definitely. Would I jump on the wizard chess Knight and sacrifice myself, not just for my friends, but to save the whole world, yep. That hasn’t come up yet though. I did give up my career to care for my daughter who had serious health needs. But also I’m a bit selfish in my desire to walk down that dark alley, knowing there are people who would be seriously affected if there was a dementor down there who wants to suck my soul out. I forget my actions don’t just affect me. Yep, I am a Gryffindor. The sorting hat tells Harry the difference between Syltherin and Gryffindor is choice. I think my sister could be all those things but chooses not to. I could care about the few rather than the many, but I chose not to.

Our next trip to HP world was supposed to be this spring break, but we’ve pushed off till August, fingers crossed. We’re going with Sarah, Aunt Bug, Uncle Paul and Uncle Daniel. What are their houses and what defines them? Well folks Daniel is a muggle. Not just because he won’t take the test but because he is in some ways indescribable. He is kind and carrying, sometimes, he is brave and unsafe, sometimes, he ambitious, sometimes, and he is family oriented, sometimes. He is an enigma and the sorting hat would have no idea what to do with him. His sweet disposition and willingness to say yes, though, would probably stick him in Hufflepuff, but he prefers to remain a muggle. Bug and Paul are Ravenclaws but you’ll have to stay tuned to find out what that means and how your personality traits impact the sorting hat. To be continued...

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