This is something we've tried to do ever since we started eating dinner around the table as a family but it rarely works out the way I hope it will.
Me: "Let's play rose and thorn!"
Me: "C'mon, it's easy. Choose one thing that happened today that was really good for your rose and one that was not so good for your thorn."
Liam, sighing heavily: "Rose - everything. Thorn - nothing."
Me: "Ugh."But so much had gone on today that I was hopeful I'd get some better answers.
"I'll start," I said. "Let's see... my thorn was definitely when my car got broken into and my stereo got stolen. That sucked."
"Oh, yeah. But it was really cool that we got to learn about fingerprints and meet that police man and see what car window glass looks like when it breaks."
"That's true. I guess it wasn't that bad. But it was still my thorn. And my rose, hmmm...I think it was seeing you and Finny playing with all those new friends at the community center." We had spent the afternoon at the park by our house, hanging out with a bunch of homeschoolers.
"That was so fun."
"Was it your rose?"
"Hmmm. I don't know..." Uh oh, I thought, here it comes. He's about to say "everything" just like he usually does, then he'll roll his eyes and ask to be excused. But to my surprise he said, "There were a lot of good things that happened today. The police man and the park and the fair and this slushie...but I have to say the best part was when Dada beat (enter very specific video game information here) on Kirby."
"Yeah. Definitely. And my thorn...let's see... Oh, I know! It was when I almost starved to death in the car."
"It was a big day," I said laughing.
"Yeah. It was a good one."
"Mama," Liam said thoughtfully. "You know how homeschool is like a really good fit for me?"
"Yeah. Well, will you please make sure you only teach me first grade things this year so you still have things to teach me next year? I don't want to run out of things to learn in homeschool."
"Okay, buddy. I'll pace myself. But don't worry - there are always new things to learn."
"Good. I love homeschool."
"I'm so glad," I said, squeezing his hand. "I love it, too."