A collection of the best gifts for kids of all ages featuring tried and true products that my own kids have truly loved over the years. You’ll find an assortment of games, items for imaginative play, STEM toys, tech, and more. If you are looking for Christmas gift ideas for little ones, you have come to the right place!

A collage of product images with a pink frame in the center and text inside "gift guide for kids".

This gift guide was so fun to put together – and offered a moment of reflection to truly think about what items my kids absolutely love in our home, which has made it easy to share my top picks with you.

Below, I share all of the things my kids regularly play with or use over and over again – items that add so much joy, learning opportunities, problem-solving skills, and creativity on a daily basis.

Clothing & Accessories

The North Face Thermoball Hooded Jacket – All of the kids have had this jacket; I love that it is warm yet lightweight and not at all bulky. It lasts forever; Dominic is still wearing the one Joseph had years ago. Towards the end of last winter, the zipper pull on Joseph’s broke (I’m blaming 2nd grade recess shenanigans); I took it to a local dry cleaner, they replaced it for $11, and he’ll get another winter out of it, and eventually it will get to Dominic. Definitely worth the investment!

Babiators – We’ve been buying these since Joseph was a baby, and they are virtually indestructible. They make sizes for babies/toddlers and preschoolers.

Robe – Isabelle got this for Christmas a couple of years ago and still loves wearing it around the house on chilly mornings. A great investment!

Slippers – Dominic and Isabelle love wearing slippers once the cool weather hits. I love how cute these little animal ones are (especially since I have my own love affair with LLBean slippers for myself!).

Socks – If you like to include practical gifts, I cannot recommend these Adidas socks more highly! Joseph is ROUGH on socks and we are over three months in on these (which includes a baseball season, a dek hockey season, and daily wear to school) and not a single hole!


My kids LOVE board games. They will often head downstairs on their own in the morning and set up a game for themselves. We have a pretty good selection, and these are their go-to-favorites:

For Preschoolers/Younger Kids

For Elementary-Aged Kids


Books are everywhere in our house! Literally, overflowing from cabinets in our family room to every bookshelf the kids have in their rooms. They love to read and be read to; here are many of our favorites:

Favorite Board Books

Favorite Books for Preschoolers/Early Readers

Favorite Books for Older Kids and More Advanced Readers

Pretend Play

Big Builders Pro Kids Workbench – Our friends bought this workbench for Joseph’s 2nd birthday, and it was one of the most-used, best toys in our house for yearssssss. All of the kids would play there every.single.day. When my husband would get out a drill or screwdriver, they found their own tools and “helped” him. They even used it as a kitchen occasionally to stir up pasta, chicken, bread, or coffee with the tools and paint bucket :)

Kitchen Tools Play Set – Another big favorite! Isabelle will often bring a pot and some other things over when I’m in the kitchen and try to imitate what I’m using and making. The kids will sit and make pretend meals for themselves :)

Wooden Food Groups Set – My aunt bought these for Joseph when he was two, and the kids have all loved playing with them. They bring us food, and pretend to have picnics, and it’s good practice to name the different foods. I’m a big, big fan of anything Melissa & Doug – they make such great toys!

Tea Set – Another big hit with all of the kids!

Baby Doll and Baby Doll Stroller – Isabelle LOVES her baby dolls and she got a stroller for them last Chrismtas; they get pushed all over the house.

Barbies – Isabelle loves to play with Barbies at school, and at home she has a Barbie doctor set that includes two baby dolls.

Doctor’s Kit – Perhaps the single most-used toy in our entire house over the last few years. It gets played with nearly every single day, no exaggeration.

Scoop and Serve Ice Cream Counter – Isabelle got this for Christmas last year and it is played with almost every single day. A huge, huge hit.

Pirate Ship – This was one of Dominic’s favorite gifts from last Christmas, he still plays with it a TON.

Action Figures – These also get daily use in our house in a million different ways. These are some of their favorites right now:

Super Hero Capes – We have a handful very similar to these and they were used constantly when the kids were toddlers/preschool age, but Dominic and Isabelle will still put them on from time to time and fly around the house :)

Art + Projects

Double-Sided Easel – This has been in our playroom since Joseph was a toddler, and it gets an incredible amount of use. It has a chalkboard side and a dry-erase side that you can also clip paper onto. It’s been used for drawing, letter writing, and even painting when we clip easel paper onto it!

LCD Writing Tablet – It’s like a pseudo dry erase board but without the risk of getting marker on everything! We’ve had one for over a year and a half and it gets used pretty much every single day. The kids draw on it, practice writing, leave each other notes… love it!

Portable Lap Desk – Someone gifted Dominic a similar character-themed version of this for his time in the hospital. This is great to have for sitting and doodling, and perfect for car rides, as well.

Mosaic Creations Magnetic Designer – This is a big, big hit with both Dominic and Isabelle. They have so much fun building pictures and it’s great for color and number recognition.

Kinetic Sand – This has been a big hit at our house and though the kids have pretty much outgrown it, they ask every once in a while for me to bring it out. A fun way to play with sand inside!

Classic Lite Brite – You seriously cannot go wrong! I secretly want to use it, too ;-)

Spirograph – I had one of these when I was a kid and LOVED it!!

Build Your Own Super Cars Sticker Book – A great activity for keeping busy in waiting rooms or restaurants. The boys love these books.

Stamp-a-Scene Stamp Pad – Another of Isabelle’s favorites!

Stained Glass Craft Kits – My kids have done many of these and LOVE them! They create stained glass “suncatchers” but use stickers instead of paint. It’s mess-free and they turn out beautiful.

Art Supplies – Our kids love to make signs, cards, and design their own things, so I keep these things in stock (a combination of any of these would be a great gift set!):

For Little Cooking and Baking Enthusiasts

Personalized Apron – Nothing says chef status like an apron. There are so many cute patterns to choose from!

Wooden Baking Utensils – Usable wooden kitchen utensils, just at a smaller, kid-friendly size.

Pop-Up Cake Kit – A fun indoor project for a cold, snowy afternoon.

Cookie Puzzles – 12 puzzles in one that the whole family will have fun working on.

Intro to Baking Set – Includes an assortment of real, child-size, baking tools, as well as recipe cards.

13-Piece Kitchen Tool Set for Kids – A great set of tools to begin accomplishing kitchen tasks; includes cutting boards, child-safe knives, peeler, crinkle cutter, and more.

KiwiCo Science of Cooking: Bread & Butter Kit – This fun delivery provides a kid-friendly approach to gluten, yeast, and emulsions.

Cookbooks for Kids:


Magna-Tiles – A classic! The kids love building with these, and there are SO many different types of magnetic tiles expansion sets available if you know someone who already has the basic set.

Wooden Blocks – A childhood staple! We have one set of these, but with three kids, we could easily use two.

Puzzles – I have always loved puzzles and am thrilled when our kids take one out to build. Here are some of our favorites:

LEGO Classic Bricks Set – Our kids love building sets as well as using the loose bricks to come up with their own creations.

LEGO Technic Sets – The boys love these! Joseph can do them pretty much independently, and Dominic needs some help, but they are awesome cars.

More LEGO – Dominic (age 7) really likes the following types of sets, which he can do on his own (most of these he has received at the hospital):

KiwiCo Subscription – Our kids have received these off and on since they were toddlers and Dominic, especially, REALLY loves them (he calls them his “project boxes”). They have boxes and subscriptions for different age ranges, and interests (including cooking), as well as themed boxes (Dominic received the holiday set for his birthday).


Hot Wheels Cars – Our kids (mostly the boys, but sometimes Isabelle, too!) have long been obsessed with any and all cars. Traditional Hot Wheels are most-used in our house and along with accompanying track pieces and sets, they can do so much with different setups.

Wooden Train Track Set – Another classic! We’ve had these tracks for years; at first, they would just build randomly, sometimes Joseph would try to copy the track on the box, and now that they are very into auto racing, they will actually build their favorite tracks out of the train tracks. Love the imagination! We have this expansion pack, and there are so many others, as well as extra trains.

Monster Trucks – We have one or two packs of these, that all of the kids love playing with.

Construction Trucks – A forever favorite here. As well as this pack of city vehicles, which has a garbage truck, fire truck, boom lift truck, and dump truck.

Character Cars – The kids also love the sets of Paw Patrol vehicles and Super Mario Character Cars.

Remote Control Cars – We have quite a few! Recent favorites are this stunt car, monster truck, and Mario Kart cars.

Indoor Mini Hockey Rink Set – This gets SO MUCH use in our basement!! The kids have so much fun with it, especially in the winter when they can’t get outside as often to get their energy out. (This is a half rink, we have two of them so we can connect them to a full rink.)

Guardian Bike – We got this for Joseph for his 8th birthday and he has ridden it non-stop since. My husband did tons of research on bikes (since this is likely one Joseph will have for many years before needing to get a bigger one) before deciding on this one and was really impressed with how well-made it is.

Schwinn Kids Bike – Both Dominic and Isabelle have versions of this bike; it’s extremely well-made and has served them both well.

Hoverboard – Our neighbors have these and Isabelle always talks about how cool they are.

Nerf Football – A classic must-have for any sports-loving kid.

Kid-Sized Basketball – Perfect if they have a hoop in the driveway, go to the park to play, or just wanted to practice dribbling on the sidewalk.

Light Up Basketball – This glow-in-the-dark basketball is perfect for playing at night! Joseph gifted one of these to a friend for a recent birthday.

Trading Cards – My kids (Isabelle included) love trading cards and are always excited to go through a new pack. Don’t forget the trading card binder for storage! Some ideas based on what your kids are into:


Camera – Another guaranteed hit; our kids love being able to take their own pictures.

Nintendo Switch – We got one of these last year when Dominic began treatment and was spending A LOT of time in the hospital. It provides a great distraction, and the kids can also play together on a regular TV at home. Some of their favorite games include:

Yoto Mini Audio Player – Each of the kids got one of these for Christmas last year and they really enjoy being able to pop in a story and listen either in the car, at night in bed, or if they’re relaxing on the couch. There is also a “Yoto daily” podcast that the kids LOVE… it’s full of little tidbits of information, quizzes, happy headlines, and jokes.

Yoto Cards – To go along with the player; you can purchase physical cards and also download them from the app. There is music and stories, including many popular books, both for young kids and older kids. You can buy single cards and there are also many packs to choose from.

Amazon Fire Tablet – There are multiple tablets available for kids (and most are 50% for Black Friday):

Headphones – Perfect for ANY electronic device (or if they need them for school)!

Walkie-Talkies – My kids LOVE using walkie-talkies around the house, and I love that they actually make a three-pack of them instead of just a pair. If you only need two, then grab this set!


Magnetic Calendar – Joseph got one of these when he was in preschool and then Dominic and Isabelle got their own. They’ve loved “doing their calendar” in the morning, especially during their preschool years. It’s fun for them and a great learning tool, too.

Binoculars – A guaranteed hit for all kids!

Throw Blankets – My kids love to gather up their blankets and get cozy on the couch, too!

Stuffed Animals – Our house is overrun with them, but I get it; our kids all have a few special ones that they keep in their beds or close by at all times.

Planetarium Projector – All three kids have this in their rooms. Dominic loves to sleep with the “stars” on and they all love to cycle through the planets in a dark room and see if they can name them. A great, fun alternative to a traditional night light.

Owala Kids Water Bottle – My kids are always thrilled to get a new water bottle, so if you know someone who is due for a new one, it makes a great gift!

PackIt Freezable Snack Bag – Great for school, errands, traveling… we have four of these at our house!

Measuring Tape – Our kids measure everything and anything with this.

Stopwatch – I can’t be the only one whose kids love to time everything, from how long it takes to do something to races outside, this will get constant use!

Handheld Tally Counters – Counting goes hand in hand with the timing above! Would be fun to have for traveling, too.

Shape Shifting Box – One of the kids got this last year and they all love it! A great stocking stuffer idea.

View All Other Gift Guides:

TELL ME! What would you add to this list? Are there any popular gifts that your kids or grandchildren absolutely love?