Like Lists

My children are blessed with a large and generous family–which means that every year, as Christmas approaches, folks start asking what the kids want for Christmas. They rarely have real ideas–Silas will always say “Pokemon cards,” but he literally has 10,000 of them. I think it’s just the only thing he can think of wanting.

The other day, I was listening to the Happier podcast (HIGHLY recommend), and they shared a listener recommendation to have your kids make “like lists” rather than “wish lists.” They have to name 25 things they like. This gives people who don’t see them all that often some ideas about what they’re into. Because it’s 25 things, they dig a little deeper rather than naming their top three interests (and they get weird… Petra: “Different colored dirt.” Silas: “Pancakes and bacon.”). And because it’s “things they are into” rather than “buy this specific item,” the giver has some space for discovery, creativity, and thought.

Silas’ “Don’t Like” list…I love that he is concerned someone might get *him* a baby doll!

I also asked them to name five things they don’t like, in part because Petra will end up getting baby dolls if she isn’t specific about not liking them. Silas’ “don’t like” list got a little extreme and silly.

I think we’ll do this each year. It’s a fun way to track their interests over time, as well as communicating with the gift-givers in their lives.

Petra likes:
  1. Hatchimals
  2. Swimming
  3. Calico Critters
  4. Dinosaurs
  5. Puzzles (ed. note: she can competently do 300-piece puzzles on her own, and around 500 with help. More than that and she gets bored).
  6. Kittens
  7. Fossils (ed. note: not only dinos)
  8. Sticker books
  9. Silas
  10. King of the Shadows (ed note: This is a live-action fantasy role playing game that Silas made up).
  11. Books about kitties (ed note: She’s especially interested in the Warriors series, particularly the graphic novels. Although she has checked out many from the library, she doesn’t own any)
  12. Cutelopes (ed note: A game she and Silas made up with their besties. It involves being forest creatures trying to survive monster attacks)
  13. Cool leaves
  14. Surprisingly big sticks
  15. Colorful pieces of dirt
  16. Rivers
  17. Pink
  18. Pokemon
  19. Tiny pieces of bark which come off trees
  20. Harry Potter
  21. Potter Puppet Pals
  22. Colorful things
  23. Bats
  24. Dresses
  25. Fairies
Ed note: She left off Miyazaki films and then was upset when I mentioned this and she already had 25. She recently watched Nausicca and it blew her mind.
Petra doesn’t like:
  1. Babies (baby animals are fine)
  2. Jeans
  3. Tics
Silas likes:
  1. Star Wars
  2. Legos
  3. Cats and kittens
  4. The Dragon Prince (Netflix series)
  5. Video games (ed note: Currently playing LEGO Harry Potter, also likes Disney Infinity)
  6. Harry Potter
  7. Captain Underpants (ed note: has the first 10 books)
  8. Amulet (ed note: graphic novel series–he has all of the books)
  9. graphic novels
  10. audiobooks and podcasts (ed note: Fav podcasts are Story Pirates, Wow in the World, and Eleanor Amplified)
  11. Making comics
  12. Rainforests
  13. Pirates
  14. Nerf weapons
  15. Theater (ed note: He clarified that this includes seeing plays and taking theater classes, as well as making up his own plays)
  16. Bakugan Battle Brawlers (ed: I don’t know what this is)
  17. Pancakes and bacon
  18. Dragons
  19. Wizards
  21. Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
  22. Voltron
  23. Discworld
  24. Ramune
  25. D & D
Silas doesn’t like:
  1. Baby dolls
  2. Being mistaken for a girl
  3. Candyland
  4. Pants with a zipper
  5. Sticky or slimy things
  6. Pollution
  7. Unicorns
  8. Getting my hair cut


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