We have this ranch. Its located around 100 miles south and west of San Antonio, at the intersection of highways 97 and 72. There is much that could be said about this land (1200 acres, give or take), but all that is necessary right now is that it takes about 3 hours to get there from our home north of Austin, and we needed to get down there and take a look around.
One problem we've had in past in making the trip is that three hours is a long time for a little boy to sit still. I cannot complain (much) about Jake's ability to put up with this journey. He has done about as well as a guy his age could be expected to, but there were times when the patience of his mom and dad wore mighty thin.
But not this time. You see, at some point over the course of the summer and fall he has become a Reader. Not just able to read, but a Reader. There's an important distinction here. An ordinary reader is capable of reading, perhaps even at a very high level. But a Reader wants to. And not just Dick and Jane either. I think he first started reading independently with Zia. No, I'm not kidding.
We've been reading the Harry Potter books lately. He's seen all the movies, and was sort of agitating to read the next book. I convinced him to start at the beginning, and though we started by having Trish and I do all the reading, he has gradually taken to doing a lot of it on his own, briefly before we finally make him turn out the lights, at odd moments at the house, and on our way to run various errands.
This past Saturday, for three hours on the way down, and another three hours on the way back, he read Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. Six hours of reading. I'm not sure if I should be proud or scared.