A family's top 10 list

Your Year, In Lists

As the calendar year winds down, it seems like every publication is putting out a top 10 list. From best songs to worst TMI celebrity moments, top 10 lists are a fun way to encapsulate the year. They don’t tell the complete story, of course, but do offer perspective on your year. Why not create a top 10 with your family?

Family writing top 10 list

Family top 10 lists? Absolutely. Your opinions on the highlights (and lowlights) of the year are just as valid as those on any website. What was the most meaningful? What stands out? And what can you learn from those moments? Compiling your family's top 10 on various subjects can be a great way to reflect on the year -- and help plan for an even better coming year.

Get the whole family involved

Get out a pad of paper (or the iPad) and start brainstorming with your family. What were your toddler's top 10 missppoken words? What were your teen's most embarrassing moments in public?

Start with categories and the items will flow. Plant the seed to think about lists one night at dinner, then follow up over several days. You'll probably come up with some really fun lists -- and what your kids remember might surprise you.

The great… and the not-so-great

We all have highlights in our year, from best family outings to favorite unplanned moments, but we likely have a few lowlights, too. Not every year is perfect. While you might like to totally forget about the not-so-great times, keeping them in mind and how they came about may help you and your family avoid such situations in the future. You don't have to note all the less than fun moments, but don't dismiss them when making your lists either.

Do something with your lists

Now that you have your top 10 lists, what do you do with them? You can type them up and store them on your computer, of course, or you could have some fun with them.

  • Create a scrapbook of lists, with photos and memorabilia associated with them
  • Create a wall calendar for the coming year with your lists
  • You could list them David Lettermen-like and take video of various family members presenting them. This might make a fun clip to send the grandparents
  • Have each family member take a list and present it in some way, say, on New Year's Eve -- what a fun way to wrap up the year

Take your cues for the coming year

One great thing your lists can do is give you cues for the coming year. Where all your memories intersect are areas you may want to try to repeat. The unexpected outing that everyone loved? Go to that amusement park again in the coming year! The time everyone stayed home and played a board game, ignoring phone and internet for several hours? Schedule those nights. Those are the moments that will hold in your children's memories forever, not just until the next set of top 10 lists.

More top ten lists

Top 10 reasons why you are a good mom
Top 10 ways to keep your kids from fighting
Top 10 Family friendly movies

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