When our youngest daughter was turning six we had many phone calls from grandparents inquiring what present to get her. No one knew - nor did we.
She was not a girly girl and never had a doll. She did not want to be a princess. She preferred being outside digging around for bugs or playing with a neighbor's dog. Yes, she was a bit of a tomboy; although she 'looked' like a girl.
I spent days pondering over what to get, and what to tell her grandparents. An idea came to me.
Her grandparents gave her one of those short shovels with the handle on the end and a toy dump truck.
This was the best birthday present ever. Our daughter LOVED it. (I don't think we saw her again until she was eight). She and the neighbor's children dug in it for hours every day. They dug, and dug, and dug, and did imaginary things.
She is years down the road now from the 'dirt pile' but she remembers it as the best present she ever received. The only thing that did suffer a little was the plumbing in the bathtub.