I really appreciate it when people post about gifts they've received or loved or had success giving, so I'm going to throw two ideas out, just in case you're feeling particularly stumped.
Our friends in Germany had a version of these, and to be honest, had we not tried theirs first, we never would have purchased this item for ourselves. It seems so silly! An electric grinder for salt and pepper! Please! How lazy can we get?
Well, pretty lazy, apparently. But whatever! Because these are so FUN! And oddly satisfying to use! Just push the button on the top and ground spice comes out the bottom. Everyone we've given them to has really liked them as well. We've been buying ours (as gifts) from various vendors on Amazon, but they are also available at specialized kitchen stores.
Wind-up Toys / Ornaments
The two wind up toys above are from Kikkerland. They spark and jump and turn and move in funny paths. We gave them to our kids last year for Christmas, although, due to the sparking, etc., they're not recommended for younger kids. The kids used them with supervision and they have held up fairly well.
This Jack in the Box ornament below has also been a big hit with the kids. We've had it since 2008. It's missing a bow, but still works! As an ornament, it doesn't stay on the tree for very long. The kids can't wind it until about age 3 or 4. Now we're at the point where there's always a bigger kid willing to wind it for a smaller kid. I always feel like I won a small victory when something encourages an older and younger to work together.
There's definitely some irony in these suggestions. DON'T wind your spice grinder, but DO wind a toy. Did you catch it?