Gift Ideas for Little Girls (and how to give to your favorite causes while shopping!)

We typically only give the girls one Christmas gift each, so we like to make it count. I prefer toys that encourage imaginative play and are tried and true classics, rather than whatever toy is trendy that year. We have done a lot of trial and error through the years, and I thought I would write about the ones that have been successes with the girls.

These are our favorite toys for little girls:

1. Calico Critters

I LOVED playing with Calico Critters when I was a little girl, and when Ruth found my old Calico Critters at my mom’s house, she was in heaven. They are so cute, and can inspire hours of imaginative play. They also appeal to a wide range of ages, so you really get your money’s worth.

2. Little People

The girls got their first Disney Princess Little People when my oldest was only 2, and they have all seriously been playing with them every day since. Of all of the biggest toy hits, this was probably the winner.

3. Dress Up

My girls absolutely love playing dress up.  In fact, Rose has a favorite princess dress that she wears every day. Ruth prefers to mix it up. We got an amazing trunk full of costumes one year from Costco that has held up amazingly. Here is an item similar to the one we got. 

4. Tea Sets

I was served “hot” tea from this very tea set this morning. The afternoon tea may have died in the United States (RIP Boston tea), but the love of tea sets lives on in little girls, apparently.

5. Baby Dolls

Once the girls reach the age of 13 months through 2 years, they are obsessed with all things baby. The Corolle dolls have proven themselves up to the task of withstanding plenty of rigorous toddler love. And they come out of the wash perfectly too.

As you can see, we practice gender neutral parenting. Seriously though, we do have trucks and train sets and Legos, but quite honestly the girls don’t spend much time playing with them. They will play with train tracks or Legos for a little while, but if I am looking for more than a 15 minute diversion, they are not my go-to.


As a parent, books are ALWAYS welcome instead of toys. Kids can have too many toys, but they can never have to many books, in my humble opinion.  One of my dear friends really hit it out of the park recently and gave each girl her new favorite book. (You rock, Katy!) Her expertly picked books were as follows:

Rosie Revere, Engineer

The girls and I both had a lot to learn from this book.  It is about embracing your failures as opportunities to learn something instead of letting them discourage you. And Rosie the Riveter makes a special appearance!  History for the win.

The Gruffalo

This one is so fun to read and fascinating for the children. I love doing different voices for all of the animals and making the girls giggle. “The Gruffalo” is a classic.

Pride and Prejudice

This is a really sweet little board book based on one of my favorite classics!

Pat the Bunny

We love all of the “Pat the Bunny” books, but this one the girls especially love because it is soft and comes with a little stuffed bunny that you can put in its little bed at the end.

And in case you didn’t know, (I sure didn’t until a few days ago)  you can donate to your favorite charities by doing your shopping through  Amazon Smile. My favorite charity of choice is the Pregnancy Aid Clinic which  is an option on Amazon Smile  program, but there are many other charitable options. Check them out!

Also, you can always support your favorite blogs at no additional cost to you by doing your shopping through the links posted on their blogs. (And you don’t have to buy the item listed to support them. Any purchase works  as long as you got there through their link.) Mine are posted above, of course. Alright, shameless plug over.

I’m so excited my favorite season has begun!! Advent begins on Sunday! Oh come, oh come, Emmanuel.  

4 thoughts on “Gift Ideas for Little Girls (and how to give to your favorite causes while shopping!)

  1. morgan

    Oh yes, the gruffalo is a favorite here too (there’s a surprisingly excellent german version – unlike some of their other books).
    A favorite from my childhood too is the hungry caterpillar. And my kids also looved sticking their fingers through the holes and counting the apples and learned the weekdays with this book.

    Our favorites here are Duplos (now LEGOs, because Duplos are for babies. I’m quoting my 2.5 years old son here!) and the brio train. I loved that one as a kid, too, as well as did my husband. And both bear great gift ideas, because you can never have too many blocks or rails.
    The brio train set usually sits forgotten in a box in a corner of our living room during summer but every autumn they grab it again. So I think we are in it for a couple more years of fun 🙂

    1. Post author

      Love all of those things. My mom still has my brother’s old Brio set (almost 30 years old and still looks brand new!) I want to get the girls one eventually, but they are SO expensive here. Going to have to save up for it! We have just have Duplo so far, because those tiny Legos make me nervous around the baby. The girls really love them too! The clean up, not so much 😜

      1. morgan

        they are dang expensive here too 🙁 we got one at a reasonable price at a kids stuff flea market 🙂
        ha! cleaning up LEGO… have to post a pic eventually. the way between the kids room and our bedroom is plastered with LEGO. makes up for a lot of during the night when they come toddling to our bed… but so far, no learning effect happened (as in: cleaning the stuff before going to bed won’t lead to hurting feet in the night). I see this as a social experiment. muahahaha. I’m evil

      2. Post author

        Ugh, if you find a way to get kids to clean or stay in their beds at night, I don’t care how evil it is, you will have to share it with me 😉

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